Evolution of Health Care Information Systems Essay

1229 WordsAug 10, 20125 Pages
Introduction The first use of computers in management of clinical information occurred in the 1960s. Since then the environment of health care information changed significantly that it is currently rare to find a physician who does not use computer to retrieve investigation results, submit prescriptions, search for scientific updates or search drug information. The typical contemporary hospital has computers and a network throughout its premises. Operations before 20 years The 1980s witnessed the appearance of microcomputers coinciding with the shift of Medicare reimbursement from a cost-based system to payment according to diagnosis-related grouping, which depends on accurate use of coding system (Wager, et al., 2009). Most organizations had administrative applications that contained patient demographic and insurance information for financial management. However, they could not integrate the clinical and financial information to evaluate the care and its delivery cost. Although many organizations acquired clinical systems or applications, this acquisition occurred in piecemeal and adoption of automated operations was slow. In the early 1990s health care facilities and physician offices mainly used paper-based records and stored them in filing cabinets, kept in rooms with limited access. Physicians wrote their orders and prescriptions by hand, and it took them several days to receive reports of laboratory or radiologic investigations. Out-patient departments registered patient appointments on calendars and gave cards to patients to remind them appointment dates. By the end of the decade only 10% of hospitals and less than 15% of physician practices implemented computer-based records (Goldsmith, 2003). Operations in a contemporary health care facility As physician payment relied increasingly on documentation substantiated in the patient’s record, and as
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