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Electronic medical records systems have really just started to hit full stride over the past few years. Many providers are IT or software companies with little or no hands-on clinical experience. Few have actual hands-on clinical experience. InTouch EMR, however, was founded by healthcare professionals with an affinity for software. And the fact that cloud provider ClearDATA can say the same thing is exactly what attracted InTouch EMR to becoming a ClearDATA client in the first place.
In an effort to gain market visibility, software companies tend to add features – and thus complexities – to their products to seem more robust. But often, added features merely drive up cost while going largely unused. Such was the case with EMR companies; their products contained unnecessary fluff. And yet, many systems were still incomplete in certain critical areas.
InTouch EMR focused on the features and functionality that matter when it built a software package to meet all the business needs of healthcare providers – EMR, of course, but also scheduling, clinical documentation, billing, practice management, referral generation and marketing.
Because InTouch EMR offers the complete package for helping providers grow their business, it wanted a cloud services provider who could do the same for them. The company’s previous vendor, Amazon Web Services (AWS), was a big name with lots of technology experience, but it lacked clinical expertise and consultative services.
“We consider ourselves a consulting company,” says Nitin Chhoda, CEO of InTouch EMR. “We are not just software our clients can use. We also workshop with them and help them improve their workflow and grow their business. And so we wanted the same from our cloud provider.” Of course, finding a partner with a reliable infrastructure was paramount.
“Data loss is a serious issue and a huge liability,” Chhoda says. “ClearDATA is healthcare focused and HIPAA-compliant, and has all the detection systems to maximize the protection of our data.”
Chhoda decided to entrust all of his InTouch’s data to ClearDATA with: dedicated cloud-based servers, server replication and offsite data backup, ongoing security risk assessment, server load monitoring and HIPAA protection, including inclusion detection systems, firewall protection, VPN, antivirus protection and military-grade SSL protection.
But perhaps most importantly, InTouch EMR has received the consultative services it has needed.
“They needed more than just a hosting solution,” John Hancock, VP of Strategic Channels for ClearDATA says. “They needed a consultative partner that understands the unique needs of healthcare and that can help them grow their business through providing their customers a greater sense of security. ClearDATA’s competency is healthcare security, compliance and cloud services. We understand the needs of patient care, and we are passionate about meeting these needs and improving our industry.”
“We are a true healthcare partner,” he says. “Not only is our cloud purposebuilt for healthcare rather than a one-size-fits-all solution marketed to healthcare, but we take on more liability with a business associate agreement as it is intended; a partnership between two companies protecting PHI together and assuming responsibility together.”
And InTouch EMR values that partnership.
“ClearDATA understands our needs as a self-funded EMR company,” Chhoda says. “When we were with AWS, we were just another client. ClearDATA understands our strengths and weaknesses, and helps us come up with solutions. That would’ve been like pulling teeth with AWS.”
InTouch EMR made the switch to ClearDATA in the last quarter of 2014. Chhoda says he is extremely happy with the outcome, highlighting the patience and attention to detail the ClearDATA staff has provided. His customers have taken note of the shift as well.
“Our customers seem confident and secure because of ClearDATA’s HITRUST certification,” he said. “Even though AWS is a bigger name than ClearDATA, the fact that ClearDATA is healthcare-focused and HIPAA-focused, is significant.”
In February 2015, InTouch EMR achieved ONC HIT 2014 Edition Modular EHR certification, which designates that the software is capable of supporting eligible providers in meeting the Stage 1 and Stage 2 Meaningful Use measures required to qualify for funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
“The responsibility of an EMR vendor goes well beyond HIPAA compliance,” Chhoda said. “EMR software should provide interoperability with other EMR systems, clinical-decision support, data portability, clearinghouse integration, accounts recievable tracking, denial management, automated SMS/email/voice follow-up, as well as marketing and referral generation. InTouch EMR is committed to exceeding all these standards in partnership with ClearDATA, well into the future.”