Workflow Advantages of Electronic Medical Records
Once an EMR system is installed and staff are trained in its proper use, retrieving and updating patient clinical records is performed substantially faster and with fewer errors. In most cases, this allows health care providers to finish patient charting more quickly, and to do so while with the patient, increasing accuracy and completeness of the record. This efficiency can result in an increase in scheduled visits per hour with no degradation in patient care quality. Alternatively, by reducing the burden of administrative work, it allows a health care provider to concentrate more on the patient and less on paperwork.
While paper based patient charts are difficult to copy and are susceptible to fire or water damage, computerized medical records storage allow for easy and secure backup off site.
Compliance with HIPAA standards, such as ANSI 5010 claims submission standards and the transition from ICD-9 to ICD-10 diagnostic and procedure coding, are made substantially easier, since necessary changes can be performed programmatically and automatically.
Furthermore, virtually all EMR systems allow integration with insurance payment systems, allowing for more efficient and timely claims submission.
Sharing patient charts and medical information with other health care providers is also made substantially easier with an EMR system. While EMR interoperation is a long term goal and one not realized yet, it is possible to select patient information, including lab results and other diagnostic information, and share that with other providers, substantially increasing the quality of patient care.