Now don’t get me wrong. I don’t pretend to be an astrophysicist, and if I did, who would believe me? Sadly (fortuitously) those aspirations were dashed on the deadly shoals of poor time management and integral calculus in 1978.
However, I was prompted to think about black holes when I read an article in the Medical Post that referred to the process of “EMR consolidation” in Canada. Making a go of it in the EMR world requires a solid team of I.T. professionals, marketers, and sales people. It’s a tough business, and definitely no place for pikers. The road is littered with the corpses of failed vendors. In short, it is a world where only the strong survive.
The process of consolidation occurs when the vendors whose business plans fail are bought out or go broke, leaving the remaining software companies in a position of relative strength. At least, that’s the way it works in a competitive environment, where vendors must survive on their merit alone.
In some jurisdictions, the ultimate “consolidation” has occurred. A single EMR vendor has been selected by regulatory fiat. In New Brunswick, physicians are offered monetary incentives to sign on with the monopoly vendor. I like to think of these incentives as the “accretion disc,” the area on the periphery of the black hole, where you sit and admire the pretty colors, just before you are sucked in. Get too close, and you won’t be coming back.
Trust me, you don’t want to go there.