Electronic Medical Records vs. Paper Charting

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Electronic Medical records vs. Paper Medical Charts
By: Diedre Fitzgerald
Rasmussen College Summer 2012
English Composition; Professor Pauley

Electronic Medical records vs. Paper Medical Charts
It is no secret that the medical profession deals with some of population’s most valuable records; their health information. Not so long ago there was only one method of keeping medical records and this was utilizing paper charts. These charts, although still used in many practices today, have slowly been replaced by a more advanced method; electronic medical records or EMR’s. “The manner in which information is currently employed in healthcare is highly inefficient, which slows down communication and can, as a result, reduce the emergence and discovery of problems. Accelerating communication and the use of information creates new opportunities to improve healthcare, but also new opportunities for problems to occur” (Ethan, Norman, Prashila, Samuel, 2011, p.3-4). Although they are very reliable, paper medical records are becoming a thing of the past while electronic medical records are among one of the new advancements in our technologically savvy world. Both paper charts and EMR’s ultimately give clinicians and patients the same result but the journey is far from similar; A paper free work environment was once something to only imagine but in our present day is this new age technology exactly what we imagined?

Paper medical records are something that most anyone who has been in the medical field for more than a few years are familiar with. This method of patient charting is very cut and dry and keeps true to its form of being a reliable source of information on a patient. According to the Law and Contemporary Problems Journal, the main function of paper medical records is to serve as a container or storage device that is occasionally opened to add new information while at the same time, preserving an authoritative method of treatment (Ethan, Norman, Prashila,...
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