NaviNet Intros Cloud EMR, Practice Management

Healthcare software targeted at practices with 10 or fewer physicians trying to meet meaningful use guidelines for electronic medical records.

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NaviNet has announced the introduction of NaviNet EMR and NaviNet PM -- two products that the company said will deliver physician practices comprehensive electronic medical record (EMR) and practice management (PM) functionality through a software-as-a-service model. Both will connect with health plans via NaviNet's multi-payer web portal, NaviNet Insurer Connect.

Monday's announcement adds yet another EMR solution to an already crowded field, but the company said its first-of-its-kind product for unified patient information management (UPIM) offers healthcare providers and professionals one-stop access and convenience by linking a physician practice's administrative, financial, and clinical workflows through a single website.

This combination of NaviNet solutions lets medical office professionals manage key patient data and office processes from one access point, reducing operating costs, increasing efficiency, simplifying practice workflows, and improving patient care and service. Both products are powered by CureMD.

Lynne Dunbrack, program director at IDC Health Insights, told InformationWeek that NaviNet is targeting smaller practices that have not yet implemented an EMR application. She also noted that NaviNet has a deep customer footprint among physician practices as well as their payer clients who use the NaviNet network as a means of communicating via administrative transactions such as eligibility checks, referrals, authorizations, and claims submission.

"NaviNet is well known at many physician practices where they are... using NaviNet to support office workflow, and so I think it does make sense for them to offer an EMR application as another service to physician practices that they are already doing business with," Dunbrack said.

NaviNet also announced that its EMR solution will be generally available in the first quarter of 2011. That might be too late for some practices, said Judy Hanover, research director at IDC Health Insights, but there are many practices with up to 10 physicians that are looking for an EMR solution, and still have time to meet meaningful use deadlines.

"Ten-or-fewer-physician practices make up about 97% of the practices in the U.S., so that's a great big open field. For small practices, we are typically looking at an implementation time of three to five months," Hanover said. "Those practices still have until the end of 2011 to implement an EMR, demonstrate meaningful use, and receive the maximum stimulus funds. NaviNet has a good, loyal installed base and it is still possible, particularly among their existing customers that are upgrading or enhancing their technology, to add an EMR solution in the meaningful use timeframe."

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Through its healthcare communications network, NaviNet links over 800,000 providers as well as insurance plans and other healthcare stakeholders through a single website.

The integration of fully comprehensive EMR and PM features with NaviNet Insurer Connect represents a patient-centric approach to healthcare information management that offers easy access to integrated administrative, financial, and clinical information from health plans, patients, providers, and other data sources, said NaviNet, in touting the features of NaviNet EMR and NaviNet PM. These features include: full compliance and certification with HIPAA, meaningful use, ICD10, Certification Commission for Health IT, and other requirements; the SaaS model, which minimizes practices' need for internal IT support; stringent security; and integration with other health IT platforms.

Key EMR features include: medical history, clinical summary, e-prescribing, clinical reminders, patient management and education, key performance indicators, orders and results management, and data mining reports. Key PM features include: scheduling, referral management, messaging, calendar, electronic billing, ERA, patient statement cycling, collections, and coding.

The introduction of NaviNet EMR and NaviNet PM are an important and valuable extension of NaviNet's product suite and a significant enhancement to the company's health plan communications solutions, Brad Waugh, president and CEO of NaviNet, said in a statement.

"NaviNet offers much more than just transactions or data exchange. We offer a platform that transforms patient data into meaningful information, going beyond simply facilitating or monitoring data exchange to truly managing patient data throughout the lifecycle of care events."

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