Electronic Medical Records Essay

2475 WordsJan 21, 201510 Pages
Are Electronic Medical Records a Cure for Health Care? CASE STUDY #1 During a typical trip to the doctor, you’ll often see shelves full of folders and papers devoted to the storage of medical records. Every time you visit, your records are created or modified, and often duplicate copies are generated throughout the course of a visit to the doctor or a hospital. The majority of medical records are currently paper-based, making these records very difficult to access and share. It has been said that the U.S. health care industry is the world’s most inefficient information enterprise. Inefficiencies in medical record keeping are one reason why health care costs in the United States are the highest in the world. In 2012, health care costs reached $2.8 trillion, representing 18 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product (GDP). Left unchecked, by 2037, health care costs will rise to 25 percent of GDP and consume approximately 40 percent of total federal spending. Since administrative costs and medical recordkeeping account for nearly 13 percent of U.S health care spending, improving medical record keeping systems has been targeted as a major path to cost savings and even higher quality health care. Enter electronic medical record (EMR) systems. An electronic medical record system contains all of a person’s vital medical data, including personal information, a full medical history, test results, diagnoses, treatments, prescription medications, and the effect of those treatments. A physician would be able to immediately and directly access needed information from the EMR without having to pore through paper files. If the record holder went to the hospital, the records and results of any tests performed at that point would be immediately available online. Having a complete set of patient information at their finger-tips would help physicians prevent prescription drug

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