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The governments and providers in Asia-Pacific (APAC) are focused on reducing medical expenses while improving population health and well-being. A shortage of medical professionals is seen across multiple specialties in various APAC countries; moreover, clinicians are concentrated in urban areas leading to disproportionate clinician–to-patient ratios in many areas. To address these challenges, APAC has been investing in healthcare digitalization to increase efficiency, reduce expenses, and automate/eliminate redundant processes. As a result, the adoption of IT is spurring a new wave of development across both public and private hospitals in APAC. The most notable of the IT upgrades are the Electronic Medical Record (EMR) and Electronic Health Record (EHR) technologies. On one hand, an EMR is a legal, digitized record of all encounters an individual has with a particular healthcare provider, supported by one or more of the following applications: clinical data repository (CDR), clinical decision support system (CDSS), controlled medical vocabulary (CMV) and/or computerized physician order entry (CPOE). On the other hand, an EHR is a legal, digital record of all encounters that an individual has with possibly all the healthcare provider organizations within a community, state, or region. This research identified the growing emphasis on patient experience, increasing emphasis on evidence-based care, increasing demand for Population Health Management (PHM) and competition amongst healthcare providers as the top four industry transformations driving EMR and EHR adoption in this region. According to HIMSS APAC, 42 hospitals in the region have achieved Stage 6, and 8 hospitals have achieved Stage 7. More hospitals are moving in the same direction. However, significant investments in EMR, particularly from the public sector, have received widespread criticism from APAC due to the below-expectation returns that they have generated in the past. A key reason for this is the inadequate integration of diverse systems and lack of attention to system interoperability. Therefore, despite investing in the best of solutions healthcare, providers are unable to reap the benefits because they are not able to streamline workflows and gain efficiencies in organizational processes. System interoperability has emerged as a top priority amongst several governments and efforts are being made in this direction by governments, not-for-profit organizations and the private sector. This research also identified poor user interface, cost management and lack of robust training as the top challenges and unmet needs amongst healthcare providers. The report also suggests potential solutions that the EMR/EHR vendors can consider to address the emerging market needs. New technologies such as telehealth, artificial intelligence, and open API continue to make way into the healthcare systems as they hold potentials to further improve clinical and operational efficiencies. These technologies are either capturing clinically significant patient data or leveraging patient data for analysis; both require seamless integration with the EMR/EHR systems. Market development across APAC has been extremely uneven and countries stand at varying levels of adoption and sophistication of EMR and EHR. While developed nations such as Australia, Singapore, Japan, Hong Kong are exploring solutions that help analyze health data to support predictive population health management, developing markets such as Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand are still focusing on improving their information capture systems.
This report identified key trends shaping the future EMR /EHR market in this region as well as in individual countries and highlight growth opportunities for EMR/EHR vendors. The private sector in APAC will continue to present greater potential as it has the budget to invest in innovative EMRs. Private hospitals will invest in providing high-quality care enabled by technology to attract patients. Japan and China present the greatest opportunity, followed by Australia. These countries are innovating in this space and have a high number of hospital base. South Korea contributes the highest percentage of regional revenue concentrated with local players and it has stringent regulation on data sharing outside of the hospital.
In the next 5 year, EMR vendors in APAC will compete by offering different EMR software packages for developed and developing nations: highly scalable and affordable EMR packages for developing nations and sophisticated EMR packages for developed nations.
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