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KLAS Ranks EHR Clinical Documentation Improvement Tools, Vendors

Healthcare organizations with EHR clinical documentation improvement tools ranked Iodine and ChartWise as the clear vendors of choice.

Iodine and ChartWise have separated themselves as the top EHR clinical documentation improvement tools and vendors based on technology and customer experience, according to a recent KLAS Research Performance Report.

Over the last few years, there’s been an increase in CDI vendor acquisitions and technology developments, which resulted in a number of changes in the CDI market.

Iodine, a CDI vendor that typically works with larger healthcare organizations, led the way with a 92.1 overall performance score, based on a 100-point scale. ChartWise also ranked above the market average with a 91.9 score. Optum hit the market average with an 87.6 score, while Nuance and 3M rounded out the rest of the list.

According to KLAS, Iodine’s CDI solution, AwareCDI, now offers full CDI capabilities and is gaining more traction in the industry.

“Interviewed AwareCDI users say new features—such as AI, NLP, broad reporting, and the ability to prioritize potentially problematic charts—have helped them achieve desired outcomes, including improved workflow efficiency and visibility,” wrote KLAS. “Relationships are also a strength, described by customers as collaborative and proactive.”

ChartWise, a 2021 Best in KLAS winner, generated positive feedback and outcomes from its customers. Its customers, who mostly work at midsize or small healthcare organizations, stated improved reporting and physician query rates for its cloud solution. The vendor also ranked highly in EHR integration and usability to help prioritize chart review and achieve anticipated outcomes.

“Customers specifically highlight ChartWise’s frequent, smooth updates, and a couple report optimism about additional updates scheduled for 2021,” wrote KLAS. “A few customers note that their version has fewer bells and whistles (e.g., less developed NLP technology) than some competing products.”

Optum technology, one of the largest CDI vendors, has generally yielded high customer satisfaction, highlighted by EHR integration and coding. But while some respondents praised the vendor’s support and feedback, others said it could improve. The latter said they had observed a decrease in support and proactive guidance after an Optum executive change.

“Additionally, customers note that Optum does not always follow through on development promises, especially around outpatient functionality,” KLAS wrote.

Nuance reported strong usability due to its EHR implementation, customer service, and training. Yet, Nuance is losing customers at a higher rate than its competitors, mostly because of poor functionality.

“Customers say Nuance has been slow to roll out more advanced CDI functionality for both Clintegrity and the newer CDE One, which a few clients say is missing expected functionality (including improved AI functionality),” wrote KLAS. “Some Nuance customers also report nickel-and-diming, both with licensing for employees and when expanding contracts to new or acquired facilities.”

3M respondents credited the vendor’s strong reporting, EHR integration, worklist prioritization, and quality indicators. However, its customers also reported poor customer experience and a lack of training on new products or tool optimizations.

“Exacerbating the service frustrations, over 50% of interviewed customers feel nickel-and-dimed for things like service, system fixes, and upgrades,” KLAS reported. “A couple of 3M’s MModal CDI Collaborate customers (acquired in 2019) have felt an increase in nickel-and-diming over the last year and report an overall drop in satisfaction following the acquisition.”

ChartWise and Iodine customers were both highly satisfied and satisfied during EHR implementation quality and user training.

ChartWise respondents said they were impressed with the implementation speed and product optimization. Iodine customers said the vendor’s training helps them utilize the software to its full potential.

This report follows the 2021 Best in KLAS Rankings, where Epic Systems was awarded the top overall software suite for the 11th straight year. Overall, Epic earned 11 awards, including the top overall physician practice vendor.

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