We all are aware of how the CMS multimillion dollar plan for EMR adoption created waves in the Healthcare IT industry. EMR was a proven tool to optimize practice operations and workflows. Large hospital corporations and technology enthusiasts were already reaping its benefits long before the government’s incentive program. Within the last two and a half years, EMR has managed to change the face of the Healthcare industry in the US. The adoption rates are now higher than ever. With the introduction of affordable, web-based EMR solutions, smaller practices can now look to automate their clinical and administrative processes as well.
While a practice may benefit from cost savings and improved productivity, the real benefactors are the patients themselves. An EMR offers increased quality of care through built-in interaction checks, improved accountability and ease of access, thus the future of healthcare backed by EMRs looks very promising indeed.
With increased focus on EDI and security, it is easier to anticipate what may come next. Healthcare portals are slowly gaining popularity amongst patients. With access to electronic personal health record, a patient is remains informed. The CMS wants to establish a new, more efficient method for care delivery by promoting online healthcare information exchange. This is also keenly reflected within the meaningful use objectives for stage 1 and the proposed stage 2.
Utilizing the technology available today, physician-patient interaction can be transformed completely. Integrated EMR Portals remove care delivery barriers and keep patients synchronized with real-time data to manage their health better. These may include online follow ups along with clinical alerts and reminders through instant messaging (email and text). With patients already using a patient portal to book their appointments, access lab results, request prescription refills and review visit notes, the next step may be a completely virtual clinical checkup.
With the development in online healthcare information exchange, patients can manage their health better and transport vital health information anywhere, anytime. EMR is definitely changing the healthcare system and a lot of us are just beginning to realize its significance, with the dawn of a new era of accountable and accessible care for all.