The Many Benefits of Electronic Medical Records
Medical practices that have been using paper charts for years might not see the necessity of upgrading to electronic medical records (EMR). However, there are many benefits to be gained from updating to a digital system of record-keeping. Here are a few that every medical practice should be aware of.
Saving time and saving money often go hand-in-hand in the business world. Although transitioning from paper to an EMR system can be pricy at the onset, you’re going to recoup your costs over time. At the very least you won’t be paying for paper and files, and you’ll also reduce the time spent on filing.
Filling out paper charts by hand can be time consuming, as can filing them and then finding them when they’re needed again. Should paper charts get misplaced, time will be wasted in figuring out where they are. In addition, you may have to convert at least a portion of the information in charts to digital format for the purposes of medical billing and coding.
Transitioning to EMR reduces redundancy and makes the entire process of updating and accessing medical records far more efficient. This can be a huge time saver for busy medical practices.
Consider how a typical patient visit might proceed with paper charts. First your staff has to pull appropriate charts. Then nurses enter notes by hand before handing you the file to enter your own notes, after which the chart must be re-filed (if none of the information has to be entered into the computer beforehand).
With an EMR system in place, everyone can access files digitally and add notes via mobile devices. As soon as information is entered, it’s in the system and available to other users. No more physically handing off charts and trying to read each other’s handwriting and no more filing.
This technological advance can truly revolutionize your medical practice, saving you time, money, and hassle at every turn.
Greater Access to Information
The medical industry is currently in flux. Not only are healthcare providers transitioning to electronic records, but online and mobile technologies are changing the way practices operate, allowing for more remote care options. In addition, patient-controlled health solutions are becoming more and more common as tools for home testing, monitoring, and treatment are more readily available.
This means your practice needs to get with the program and participate in order to remain relevant. In addition to enjoying reduced costs and greater efficiency and convenience when updating to EMR, your practice will also provide and gain access to information.
Electronic health record databases make sharing medical history for patients easy. Not only can an ER doctor see what medications a patient is currently taking (helping to avoid dosing issues or dangerous drug interactions), but you can see what tests and treatments your patient received during an ER visit, just for example.
This not only makes your job easier, but it also improves your ability to provide the best possible care for patients, which is the ultimate goal of any healthcare professional.