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Costco jumps into the EHR market

Physicians shopping at Costco discount warehouse stores have more to choose from than jumbo packs of granola bars and mouthwash as they can now purchase electronic health record (EHR) technology.

Costco has partnered with Etransmedia to sell Allscripts MyWay EHR systems as well as practice management systems. Costco executive members can implement the system for $499 a month, while nonexecutive members will pay $599 a month according to Etransmedia. Additionally, purchasing the technology comes with a 60-month contract. The monthly fee includes online training, support, hosting and maintenance.

The Web-based system features e-prescribing, a meaningful use requirement in stage 1 of the incentive program. It also includes electronic claims technology, a patient portal and the ability to scan paper documents into the system.

“We took our time in researching the [EMR/PM] industry in an effort to help bring value and simplify the decision process for Costco members owning or operating a medical practice,” John Conlon, director of EMR/PM services for Costco, said in a statement. “We want our members to keep as much of the $44,000 in stimulus funds for the business as possible.”

There is not much competition among large retail stores for EHR systems. Walmart Stores Inc. worked with eClinical Works and Dell in 2009 to sell an EMR/computer suite at Sam’s Club stores. However, the program is no longer available.

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Costco puts hat into the #EHR ring #HITsm #HealthIT