Historically, the only means available to record health information were paper and pen, today the industry has multiple options. This type of information has been known to be transmitted between practitioners and facilities via personal messenger, phone, or interdepartmental mail. There are numerous options of transmittal but most of the above mentioned methods were fraught with errors and time consuming.
Medical information recorded in paper format makes tasks difficult, provides opportunities for mistakes, and lacks transferability. Many physicians’ offices and integrated health facilities are implementing an electronic health record in hopes that it will increase efficiency, reduce medical errors, and improve communication between the many providers in the system.
An electronic health record (EHR) is an official health record for an individual that is shared among multiple facilities and agencies. Digitized health information systems are expected to improve efficiency and quality of care and, ultimately, reduce costs.
A EHR usually includes: contact information, information about visits to health care professionals, allergies, insurance information, family history, immunization status, information about any conditions or diseases, medications, records of hospitalization, and information about any surgeries or procedures performed. With EHRs, patients' health information is available in one place, when and where it is needed. Providers have access to the information they need, at the time they need it to make a decision. Some other benefits are that you have: •
The ability to automatically share and update information among different offices and organizations. •
More efficient storage and retrieval.
The ability to share multimedia information, such as medical imaging results, among locations. •
The ability to link records to sources of relevant and current research. •
Easier standardization of services and patient care.
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