Electronic health records, also known as EHRs, are, in their basic form, a digital version of the paper medical chart that is used by a health care professional. However, the electronic health records that are used for patient care today are much more comprehensive.
Designed to provide real-time patient information, EHRs make it possible to receive medical data and clinical information easily – 24/7. Therefore, electronic health records can assist in providing health care specialists with the information needed to diagnose and treat a patient and plan his therapy.
The Benefits of EHRs in Healthcare Today
EHRs contain all the information that is essential to a patient’s care, including his medical history, medication use, immunization, allergies, radiographic images, and lab and test results. Because the records can be used to collaborate care and payments across a health care network, the records streamline the flow of documentation, enhance the accuracy of patient data and support any changes that are made in payer needs or requirements.
An All-inclusive Technology
One single electronic health record can coordinate data from current and past health care providers, school or workplace medical clinics, medical imaging facilities, labs and pharmacies. Therefore, you can think of an electronic medical records system as being all-inclusive in this regard.
Once you start using EHRs in your practice, you will also start hearing about the idea behind “meaningful use,” a term coined in connection with the standards developed in the medical field that refers to EHR transitioning.
Assessing “meaningful use” is helpful, as it references EHR technology in a way that can enhance the efficiency and quality of patient care. The overall objective behind the concept is meant to develop a health care system that is not only evidence-based and patient-focused but one that is also designed to be equitable, preventative in nature and exceptionally efficient.
Private and Secure Recordkeeping
In addition to “meaningful use,” the systematic arrangement of electronic health records is also designed to maintain digital records that are private and secure. Access should be developed so only authorized professional can retain the material. Audit functions should also be built in to determine who has recently accessed the data.
Therefore, the use of EHRs in the healthcare field today not only give health care providers better access to patient records, but permit members on a health care team a better opportunity to provide quality care.
Using digital tools for the diagnosis and care of patients is changing the way the medical system operates in the U.S. and the world. Not only are EHRs essential for treating individuals in a variety of specialties, they are also making it possible for health care centers to implement therapies that are more affordable as well as incentivized.
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