(Last Updated On: March 8, 2018)

STI is taking the first step in some very big plans to revamp what you know as the ChartMaker Medical Suite. It’s a multi-year plan to bring you newer, faster, and more secure software, including better workflow and a better design.

The first step will occur this summer when we change what we call the database engine.  Like a car engine it’s not something you interact with, but it’s an integral part of managing the electronic financial and patient data under the covers. To be more specific, we’re going to move from Microsoft’s SQL Server 2008 R2 to SQL Server 2016. It’s necessary because Microsoft will stop supporting SQL Server 2008 R2 in July of 2019 and we want to provide enough time to make the transition. In 2019, security patches from Microsoft will end for SQL Server 2008 R2, so it will no longer support HIPAA compliance.

For the vast majority of Medical Suite users (those running SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition, or those using the Medical Suite in the ChartMaker Cloud environment) this change will be seamless, occurring as part of a regular Medical Suite software upgrade, and at no additional cost. For those larger offices with the Medical Suite installed onsite and that are using SQL Server 2008 R2 Workgroup Edition, Standard Edition, or Enterprise Edition, STI will work with you to plan the upgrade process. In this latter case, it will require a few extra steps in the upgrade process, and it will involve some licensing changes.

Over ten years ago, STI switched from SAP’s Sybase SQL Anywhere database engine to Microsoft’s SQL Server 2005 because it was better technology and it offered a more cost-effective solution—basically free for Express Edition. This change allowed STI to offer the Medical Suite at much more competitive rates, and certainly a lower total cost of ownership than other EHR software.

For those clients whose needs outgrew Express Edition, we provided the best pricing possible with a step up to Workgroup Edition, or a leap to Standard Edition. Some other EHR vendors require you pay for Standard Edition whether you need it or not. That’s not the way we want to treat our clients. Yet, we can avoid this upgrade to a newer version no longer. Again, we have arranged the best pricing possible and a very convenient payment plan that we’ll talk about over the next few months for clients in this situation. There are some attractive alternatives that can save you even more money by electing to go with STI’s RCM Services, and/or ChartMaker Cloud hosting.

We’ve listened to client feedback about what you want in a cloud-hosted EHR service and while we admit it’s been a challenge handling the incredible growth of the platform, we’ve committed to building out a much more powerful server farm to support your needs. That includes an investment in the industry-leading cloud performance monitoring software.

Down the road, we’ll be making even bigger announcements that we hope will ensure you will want to stick with STI for the long run.

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