Although most medical offices and hospitals still use paper records, many are making the switch to EMR or electronic medical records. There are many reasons why this is a better idea. It can help to improve patient care as well as to reduce cost and liability. |
When paper based medical records are used, there is room for error as there can be issues with legibility. Not only can this reduce the quality of patient care, these errors could result in the health care provider being opened up to liability.
Of course, lawsuits alone can be quite costly. Also costly is the need to store paper medical records. Paper records need to be retained for a certain number of years. In the U. S., for example, this is usually at least seven years. Increased costs come when records must be copied and faxed or transported some place. Electronic records make it far easier to share records with other providers as necessary.
With the increasing interest in this type of record keeping, there are more and more computer software applications available to do so. These can be extremely simple to more extensive ones that are stored on a server but available on all desktop computers, laptops and even PDAs. This allows the healthcare providers to access the records and to input data in real-time while caring for their patients.
This type of software will also usually have the ability to integrate with billing software which can result in greater efficiency and, therefore, lower costs. The more that tasks can be integrated and streamlined, the less redundancy there will be between the workload of various personnel.
Many people are concerned about patient privacy when it comes to EMR. This is especially true because of such legal considerations as HIPAA in the U. S. Which is intended to protect the rights of patients. It's best to discuss these concerns with a software provider to better understand exactly what steps are taken to maintain the security of medical records that are kept electronically.
Prime Clinical continues to help practices achieve their EMR-EHR goals of eliminating their paper charts, and accomplishing quality and accuracy in patient care. We take great pride in the excellence that we stand for as a company and celebrate our achievements every day.(http://www.primeclinical.com)
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