The labels "cheap," "free" and "government-sponsored," respectively, could describe the three top-rated electronic health-record systems in a just-released online survey of more than 21,000 physicians by Medscape, a healthcare news and information portal owned by WebMD.
Physicians were asked to rank their systems on a scale of 1 (lowest) to 5 (highest) in 12 categories pertaining to issues such as ease of use, value and reliability.
Topping the list were the relatively low-cost Amazing Charts at 4.22; the advertising-supported Practice Fusion at 4.04; and the Veterans Affairs Department's VistA computerized patient-record system, 3.89.
Each of the top three led in at least one of the 12 categories.
Amazing Charts was rated easiest to learn with a score of 4.59; Practice Fusion topped the value rankings at 4.75; and the VistA system scored highest in reliability at 4.32.
The Medscape surveyors found that a majority of physicians were at least fairly satisfied with their EHR systems. On a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being very satisfied and 1 very unsatisfied, 18% gave their systems top marks, 27% ranked theirs at 4; 35% at 3; 14% at 2; and 7% at 1.