It can take many months and thousands of dollars to get a results only interface or bi-directional interface to “go live” from a lab system to an EMR (electronic medical records) or PMS (practice management system).  There are many factors that determine the development effort, length of time, and total price tag. “Is it worth the cost?” EMR interface costs from the emr vendor before any development is done range from $3,000 to $9,500, and up. Questions that can only be answered by the individual emr vendor.  If your lab is going to shoulder the load of an interface, is it worth it? There are alternatives.  Web-based reporting applications like ReportPath allow practices to access reports on-line, receive faxes, and email alerts.  Some referring practices will require a results only interface to their EMR, many others can benefit from this approach. Web-based order entry options like Pathagility’s OrderPath, are also available and can be pre-populated with patient demographics requisitions can be delivered electronically to the lab system. Web-based reporting and ordering can benefit all your customers at a fraction of the cost of one interface.  Cost and time are saved and in many cases will give your customer’s the functionality they are looking for. Before you jump head first into an interface, count the costs and be sure you’ve defined what your customers really need.