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Communication Paper - Electronic Medical Records

Essay by   •  August 5, 2011  •  Essay  •  885 Words (4 Pages)  •  1,070 Views

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Communication Paper

Electronic Medical Records (EMRs) have the potential to improve financial performance of a hospital in many ways. They reduce the chance of unnecessary retests and duplicated procedures that can be caused by misplaced paperwork. They can automate chart distribution processes and improve coding turnaround time (Healthcare Financial Management Association, 2005).

Paper-based records have been in existence for centuries and their gradual replacement by the computer based records has been underway for approximately twenty years. The computerized information systems have not achieved the same degree of success as that seen in other areas such as finance, transport and the manufacturing and retail industries. The deployment of this type of system has varied greatly from country to country.

In the United States the national level of EMRs has been limited to around 17 percent of physician office practices and the ones implemented have been used mainly for administrative rather than clinical purposes.

Electronic medical records systems lie at the center of computerized health information system. Without these, other modern technologies such as decision support systems cannot be integrated effectively into the routine workflow. The option of a paperless, interoperable, multi provider, multi specialty, multi discipline computerized medical record has been the goal for many researchers, health care professionals, administrators and politicians for the past 20 years and is becoming a reality in many countries now (Open Clinical, 2005).

Electronic medical records are beneficial to patients and their medical information by giving better access to the information needed, reducing gaps in communication between the providers and also help in the reduction of duplicate testing procedures (Benefits of EMR Over Paper Charts, nd).

EMRs also offer the benefit to have only authorized users accessing the system to read the information available on a patient. This also supports caregiver decision making and keeps patient information confidential. It offers tools to patients to view their own health records and it also provides a means of interactive patient education. An EMR can also help in carrying out home-monitoring and self testing which can aid in controlling chronic conditions such as diabetes (Open Clinical, 2005).

The use of the electronic medical records between consumers and providers offers patients to be more involved with their own care and they can contact providers if need be. Patients can double check scheduling for appointments and it can also increase the timeliness of diagnoses and treatments and reduce the frequency of any adverse events.

Using an electronic medical record has many benefits over using the paper method. Some of the benefits include saving space instead of having shelves of files and charts. The need for additional staffing is reduced over a period of time. The use of EMRs are beneficial in attracting new physicians as some

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