EHR Innovators Part 2: drchrono

April 1, 2012
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drchrono ehr digital health

This is the 2nd part in my round up of 4 EHR innovators that have caught my attention.  Last week I covered Practice Fusion.

drchrono ehr digital health

This is the 2nd part in my round up of 4 EHR innovators that have caught my attention.  Last week I covered Practice Fusion.

Today I’m taking a look at drchrono.

Next week, we’ll check out hellohealth and
Avado.  There are other EHR/EMRs.  Lots.  Why aren’t they listed above?  They haven’t grabbed my attention yet.  Am I missing someone exciting?  Drop it in the comments!

In an earlier post I wrote about the top 5 features I need and my patients need in an innovative EHR: Integration, Web-based Interoperability, Mobility, Provider Sharing and Patient Access.  I’m evaluation how each of these EHR innovators does on meeting these top 5 features.

On to drchrono…

drchrono was founded in 2009, and is located in Mountain View, CA, at the heart of silicon valley.  They recognized the potential of the iPad to be a disruptive technology in healthcare, and have focused on enabling the iPad and other mobile devices for meaningful patient care.  Bravo for vision!  drchrono emphasizes extreme usability, and it shows.  They’ve won awards for medical apps.  From their commercial website through their EHR and on to their patient portal, they have a clean, friendly, intuitive design.  So how do they do on my top 5 list?

Integration – especially with medical imaging
drchrono does not have an API, and as far as I can tell they don’t have immediate plans for one.  I don’t see any other way to truly integrate patient imaging, such as hooks to DICOM studies either.  That’s too bad, because delivering medical images is one of the ways the iPad can really improve the way care is delivered.  I don’t expect EHRs to include a DICOM viewer, but I do expect them to include a way to integrate with one.

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Sorry, no thumbs up here.

Web-based Interoperability
drchrono has a fast, intuitive, powerful web interface for their EHR.  Two thumbs up.


Mobility

This is where drchrono really shines.  Focusing on mobility is a good strategy for a mobile EHR vendor, and it’s the cornerstone of drchrono’s attempt to streamline the doctor-patient interaction.  The website is accessible from mobile devices, but the iPad app is their crowning jewel.  I’ve said before that I prefer mobile-optimized web apps to native iPad apps, and that’s true.  But, drchrono’s iPad app incorporates a plethora of features that can’t be had in a web app alone, including speech recognition.  Two thumbs up.


Sharing with other Providers (Health Information Exchange)

Doctors need access to each other’s notes.  Storing information in silos is the most important problem that EHR innovation must address.  This one of the 3 major objectives of meaningful use, and I’m hoping this will come soon.  It’s importance cannot be overstated.

But, like Practice Fusion, drchrono does not offer this.  I’m still stuck faxing papers around.  At least electronic faxing is included.  This one of the 3 major objectives of meaningful use, and I’m hoping this will come soon.  It’s importance cannot be overstated.

No thumbs up here.  Hoping to see this soon.


Sharing with Patients (Personal Health Record)

drchrono has a PHR with a secure patient portal, and an easy mechanism to enroll patients.  But it’s static, and clearly needs some work before it will be a tool for patient engagement.  Still, I’m going to give it 2 thumbs, because it’s been implemented, it’s simple, and it’s fast.

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Overall score on the innovation scale: 6 thumbs up, with kudos for a focus on mobility and streamlining the Doctor-Patient interaction.  Keep up the innovation.

Next installment: hellohealth.