Electronic Health Records (EHR) |
Technology & Society |
Electronic Health Records (EHR) is an official health record for an individual that is shared among multiple agencies and facilities. Digitized health information systems are expected to improve efficiency and quality of care and, ultimately, reduce costs. EHR’s contains Contact information, Information about visits to health care professionals, Allergies, Insurance information, Family history, Immunization status, Information about any conditions or diseases, A list of medications, Records of hospitalization, and Information about any surgeries or procedures performed. (Rouse, 2011) (Holt, 2003)
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* More efficient storage and retrieval.
* The ability to share multimedia information, such as medical imaging results, among locations.
* The ability to link records to sources of relevant and current research.
* Easier standardization of services and patient care.
* Provision of decision support systems (DSS) for healthcare professionals.
* Less redundancy of effort.
* Lower cost to the medical system once implementation is complete.
EHR’s are very helpful and seem to be very widely used from small practices to the largest ones but fall short on federal standards. According to Janet M. Coffman “We found that physicians are more likely to have electronic health records with functions that support individual patient visits rather than functions that support overall quality improvement”. Coffman pointed out that 61 percent of the surveyed physicians use EHRs that enable them to record clinical notes but only 45 percent are able to generate routine reports of quality indicators, such as the percentage of patients with diabetes who receive recommended lab tests, foot exams, and eye exams. Which could cause some possible complications but the benefits outweigh the consequences. (McCann, 2012)
After researching some on electronic health records and what they are about, I personally can say that I am not that concerned about my records being stored on a computer the way they are. I feel the benefits outweigh the risk in this situation. Whenever you have any type of medical care at a medical facility they enter all of your information into the computer and the data merges with the rest of your file. Although each time you have some type of care they are entering very personal information and I could see the risk involved in having your name in the system. Along with your medical history your file will have your home address, your phone number, your social security number, the medications you are on, some family members, and much more. But, for one moment think about if no one ever communicated and every time you went to the doctor or the hospital and no one could look up anything about you.
You could be unconscious, close to death, having an allergic reaction or any combination. The electronic health record system is genius. For a scenario, you are unconscious having an allergic reaction to shell fish, the only thing someone knows about you is your name, they then enter this information into the computer and bingo, they have some idea of the present conditions you already have. This could save your life. If you had already been hospitalized for this condition previously, then they may be able to put two and two together and see what’s wrong with you, the patient.
Also for insurance purposes, say you lose the papers from your hospital stay and the insurance company needs them to pay your bill. They can look back into your file for the day of the incident or procedure and then file with the correct...