According to BCC Principal, David Brooks, "Health care stands at a pivotal crossroad. Operating costs have soared, unchecked, for the last decade as the pharmaceutical industry's overall share of health care spending has grown. Meanwhile, the industry has looked to IT to simultaneously improve the quality of care and patient outcomes while decreasing costs."
But the biggest obstacle - even more debilitating than health care's historic underinvestment in technology infrastructure - has remained physician and clinical end-user adoption of enabling technologies. "Before IT can fulfil its promise in health care, vendors must provide solutions that compel user adoption. Government, of course, can offset the cost of technology overhead through various incentives. But at the end of the day, if clinicians don't use the technology, its value is limited", David Brooks stated.
Seen in this perspective, the BCC Consulting white paper holds a strong plea for the adoption of lower order technology. Electronic prescribing in fact constitutes the poor man's Electronic Medical Record (EMR). This type of solution provides more than sufficient value at only a fraction of the EMR cost for physicians, clinicians and health providers who are rather averse of IT technology. This group involves no less than 20 percent of the potential market, according to the report findings. In order to make this group jump on the IT-waggon as well, government needs to incentivize the lower order technology solutions.
According to David Brooks, mRx will prove an important litmus test for the industry. The potential return offered by mRx, particularly in light of its minimal infrastructure requirements, is huge. "Before we spend too much time discussing electronic medical records, and searching for funds to outfit the trillion dollar industry with more complex systems, let's first prove that we can make effective use of existing solutions", stressed David Brooks.
Indeed it is of major importance to recognize mRx as the killer app instead of eRx. The killer app squeezes value from the prescription process, but does not cross the line by adding just a feature too much as eRx vendors tend to do. It is a stop-gap solution and aspires to nothing greater, the white paper outlines. It is the firm belief of the BCC Consulting staff that when physicians are ready for the greater technology leap, they will jettison the stand-alone mRx in favour of an EMR.
BCC Consulting is a health care IT-focused strategy consulting firm. Through its publications, "Going Mobile" and BCC's "Mobile Resource Guide", BCC has established itself as the most trusted source for objective and insightful analysis on the mobile health technology market. You can download the white paper "Mobile e-Prescribing: The Killer App for IT Adoption" at the BCC Consulting Web site.