EHR: The Evolution of an Important New Communication Channel

EHRs are best at turning “marketing” into “helping”

The EHR (Electronic Health Record), is an unprecedented opportunity to show how helpful your brand can be in the patient care process. On average, physicians spend over 3 hours a day interacting with their EHR systems. EHRs can provide important messaging opportunities in the physician’s work stream, either part of the decision process or after prescribing. EHRs are the perfect place to provide important information about your product, as well as “beyond-the-pill tools” like educational content and patient support apps.


WHAT YOU PROBABLY KNOW

An EHR contains a patient’s complete medical history, and virtually all doctors and hospital systems use them.

EHRs were mandated by the Affordable Care Act. Today 93% of all physician practices and hospital systems use EHRs, with a varying degree of commitment and enthusiasm. Why does it vary? EHR technologies and user experience have been far from perfect. Some physicians only use EHRs for simple administrative tasks, some for basic patient information, and others for Rx info.

EHR platforms are evolving fast—and becoming user-friendly!
EHR platforms have advanced since their usage was mandated; interfaces are getting much better, and some of the larger platforms are now mobile-friendly.


WHAT YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW

There are 2 types of electronic medical record systems:

  1. Electronic Health Records (EHRs): These are designed to connect all of a patient’s providers, giving them universal access to all patient records, and have many other capabilities.
  2. Electronic Medical Records (EMRs): These are not designed to be interconnected and don’t have many capabilities.

There are only a few EHR platforms that offer marketing opportunities.
The three dominant EHR platforms are Epic, Cerner, and Athena Health. Of those three, Athena Health is the only one that allows marketing opportunities, such as patient education materials. Practice Fusion, which is aimed at small practices, also offers marketing opportunities. They don’t charge for their platform, in exchange for acceptance of embedded marketing resources.

New marketing opportunities are emerging as more patients start using EHR Patient Portals.
Patient usage of EHRs (Patient Portals) is starting to accelerate, and this is creating 2 valuable marketing opportunities.

  1. Educational Material Delivery: Patient Portals will soon be one of the best ways for doctors to provide patients with educational information.
  2. Adherence Assistance: Patient Portals will be a great place to provide adherence guidance, downloadable apps, and tools. And doctors will be able to view patient adherence activities (by permission).


WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

JUICE Pharma Worldwide, in partnership with Xpress™, can offer clients a revolutionary platform designed to provide valuable EHR marketing capabilities.

Xpress™ integrates with large systems like Epic and Cerner, providing easy, user-friendly access to client’s branded patient education materials, prescribing education, financial support resources, and unbranded resources. All of this is accessible directly within the physician’s daily EHR workflow and patient interactions.

The Xpress™ platform is being piloted at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Q2 2017.
Xpress™ is organized by disease state, and will pilot Oncology first. In partnership with a major pharmaceutical company, Xpress™ is piloting at MD Anderson Cancer Center. System-wide deployment is planned for Q4.

Xpress™ is rolling out to major hospitals in 4 disease categories and will continue to expand.
Branded and unbranded materials and resources will be offered in oncology, diabetes, immunology, and COPD brands, all within the EHR systems of major hospitals.

Things to think about
EHRs are one of the very few ways to reach a physician directly within his or her workflow.

Xpress™ is designed to intersect with the clinical decision-making process.

Other EHR systems only offer promotional opportunities after prescribing.

Marketers need to learn all they can about the dynamic marketing opportunities offered by EHRs.

If you’d like to learn more about the JUICE Applied Innovation team, contact me at ccarter@juicepharma.com.

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About the Author:

Colleen Carter
EVP, Business Development

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