EHR Matters

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Topics Include:

  1. Physicians look to cut security costs in EMR/EHR (electronic medical record/ electronic health record) Implementation.
  2. Government announced the beta testing of an ASP-EHR accreditation program.
  3. The number of online PHRs (personal health records) is rapidly increasing.

Category: EHR Matters
Date: April 27, 2009
Views:3,241 views
Information:

Hello I’m Lindsay Pine and this is EHR Matters.

The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act may deliver on the promise of EMRs/EHRs (electronic medical records/ electronic health records) software, but a sobering lead story in the New England Journal of Medicine suggests the number of EMRs/EHRs (electronic medical records/ electronic health records) in use is still very low. The journal reported only 17% of physicians use even a basic EMR/EHR (electronic medical record/ electronic health record) software system. Among hospital’s its only 9%! HIT health information technology professionals say the road to full scale adoption is not only long, it is full of potholes. A professor at Dartmouth College claims that the possibilities of unauthorized access to Health Information are so severe, that medical fraud could surpass crimes such as identity theft in the future. Unfortunately, security measures are often the first place physicians look to cut costs in EMR/EHR (electronic medical record/ electronic health record) implementation.

A bad idea according to Don Deas, IT Manager for an Endoscopy center undergoing an EMR/EHR (electronic medical record/ electronic health record) software conversion. Skimp on security in an email system, and the worst that can happen is you get a few viruses. Do that in an EMR/EHR (electronic medical record/ electronic health record) system, and there is no telling what damage can be done, said Deas.

For many the idea of using an Application Service Provider, or ASP, for EMRs/EHRs (electronic medical records/ electronic health records) is becoming increasingly attractive. An application service provider is a company that offers individuals or facilities Internet access to applications and related IT services, which would otherwise have to be located on their own computers. The government has announced it will be beta testing an ASP-EHR accreditation program in Maryland. The Application Service Provider Accreditation Program for Electronic Health Records seeks to assess vendors that provide EMRs/EHRs (electronic medical records/ electronic health records) from remote locations. According to the announcement that was featured in Government Health IT, the group hopes to take the program national, once the beta test has been completed, and the accreditation criteria finalized and approved.

All this comes as interest in Personal Health Records (personal health records) by consumers continues to expand. According to a recent study conducted by the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions, now 4 out of every 10 Americans say they would use an online personal health record (PHR). According to a NY Times article there is a “growing appeal in the idea of an electronic file controlled by the patient but accessible with his or her permission by doctors, hospitals and insurers”. The Times article went on to say, “That kind of detailed record and seamless communication could improve the quality of health care and help reduce dangerous medical errors. And by improving the efficiency of medicine, it might also help curb the nation’s skyrocketing health care costs.”

I’m Lindsay Pine and this has been EHR Matters for Monday April 27th– Thanks for watching.

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