Electronic Health Records: A Case Study

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For decades, a paper chart was the standard when a patient visited a physician’s office. Providers in private practice have been reluctant to adopt an electronic health record, primarily because of cost. Others have opted to join bigger, corporate owned practices that will absorb the cost of an EHR. On average, every time a patient visits a doctor, 10-13 pieces of paper are used. Considering that doctors see between 50 and 99 patients per week, this means that almost one thousand new pages are generated. With an electronic health record, this paper expense is eliminated. The high volume of paper requires adequate storage space, while electronic records can be stored with no physical space required (Hicks, 2015). When electronic health records were first introduced, many people were concerned about the safety and security of the patients’ charts. Paper charts, in a physician office, were typically not secured in any fashion, leaving them vulnerable to theft, flood and fire. In addition to this vulnerability, there was also no way to track who viewed what was in a paper chart. With an electronic health record, all activity is documented and can be audited at any time. This allows for better control over who has access to the information contained in the record and…show more content…
With an electronic record, information can be shared quickly between providers. It can help in reducing redundancies between providers in that lab results and other testing can be shared easily, allowing for a complete medical record to be created (Pennic, 2012). An electronic health record can be referred to as a longitudinal record, meaning that it has information about the patient gathered by organizations over a period of time, versus documentation segregated per single visit ("FAQs,"

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