How EHR installs hit hospital finances in 2023

With some EHR installation costs climbing north of $500 million, a botched installation can seriously affect a health system's bottom line.

In 2023, Becker's reported on health systems in Massachusetts, Iowa and Nebraska dealing with the financial fallout of a new EHR system. Mercy Iowa City (Iowa) cited its decision to switch to Altera Digital Health as one of the major contributing factors in filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Mercy's Chief Restructuring Officer Mark Toney said the new system made it difficult to submit reports and "misconfigured workflows."

In October, Gardner, Mass.-based Heywood Healthcare also said that a "lengthy electronic medical record transition" was partly to blame for its decision to file for Chapter 11. The health system adopted Meditech in 2019.

Even when an expensive EHR installation doesn't lead to bankruptcy, it can still have negative financial effects on a health system. In July, credit ratings agency Fitch downgraded Scottsbluff, Neb.-based Regional West Health Services to "BB-" amid problems associated with its Cerner EHR rollout.

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