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An inside look at an IT contract.

Client: Butler (PA) Health System.
Services: Emergency department information system and electronic medical record system for physicians.
Winning Vendor: After independent searches converged, Butler chose Allscripts in July 2007.
Driver: Laying groundwork for community network, Butler is capitalizing on relaxed Stark rules.
Survey Says: Virtually all of Butler's 100 physicians were planning an EMR, whether the hospital participated or not, says Mike Busch, chief strategic officer. "We didn't want to cope with interfaces to 40 different EMRs."
Number Vendors Considered: Three, including Misys and NextGen. "We wanted one of the market leaders recognized by independent organizations," says Busch.
Convergence Factor: When ED evaluation pointed to Allscripts, the two committees negotiated combined package.
Evaluation tools: During EMR demos, each vendor was given predetermined and spontaneous clinical scenarios to reenact. No site visits--the site visits did not fit into the time frame for the evaluation and selection process, Busch says.

-Gary Baldwin

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