Kalorama's forecast for 2011 assumes that EMR usage will continue to increase, as hospital EMR adoption will encourage physician adoption, current EMR Stage 3 hospitals will purchase more advanced systems, and current EMR owners will upgrade.
Carlson said the threat of penalties in 2015 in the form of reduced CMS payments for those that do not engage in meaningful use of electronic records will force doctors and hospitals to make upgrade decisions. "The stick is stronger than the carrot when it comes to the (American Recovery and Reinvestment Act) incentive-penalty equation," he said. "We continue to believe that and we think it's the industry's consensus as well. While the policy already picked up those oriented towards technology, the penalties will force conversion and upgrading in the future. And those decisions will happen in the next two years, before the penalties kick in."