Epic Systems Corp. is one of the largest providers of health information technology, used primarily by large U.S. hospitals and health systems to access, organize, store and share patient medical records.
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Started in 1979 by computer programmer Judy Faulkner, who is now the company's CEO, Epic is a privately-held company offering products tailored to address various aspects of a hospital's operations, including population health management, patient engagement and revenue cycle management. The Boston Globe reported in 2015 that Epic employed 8,500 people and earned more than $1.7 billion in revenue in 2014.
Epic states that 190 million people across the world use its technology. Forbes has estimated that at least 40% of the U.S. population has medical data stored on an Epic electronic health record (EHR), and Epic's clients include some of the biggest names in healthcare.
Due to its size, influence and -- in some cases, practices -- the company is often criticized. Among the chief complaints historically has been against its EHR systems' lack of interoperability with other vendors' products, which Epic seems to have recognized and is taking steps to change. The company was also not as fast as smaller EHR vendors to embrace cloud-based medical records systems.
Epic hosts thousands of visitors at a user conference each year at its headquarters in Verona, Wis.
Since the federal government established EHR incentive programs in 2009 to promote the adoption of EHRs by providing payments to hospitals and physician offices that implement and meaningfully use the technology, Epic has seen its client base grow.
Research firm Accenture projected the U.S. EHR market to be worth $9.3 billion in 2015. Recently published statistics from the federal Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) show that among health providers participating in the EHR incentive programs, Epic's technology ranked first as the most commonly used EHR among healthcare professionals and third at hospitals.
Although the market leader, in recent years Epic has faced stiff competition, which is reflected in the KLAS Enterprises LLC rankings of top health IT vendors. For example, Epic has long been in a tug-of-war with its chief rival, Cerner Corp. In a highly-touted bid in 2015, Cerner beat out Epic for a coveted, $4.3 billion EHR contract for the U.S. Department of Defense.