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EHR Implementation: Is Your Practice Ready?

Nov 5th 2013 at 7:18 AM

In the healthcare industry, more companies are switching to electronic health records (EHR) and replacing their antiquated hand-written records. I remember the last time I visited my doctor’s office vividly – the receptionist went to the basement to recover my file and came back about 20 minutes later. How could I be sure that everything was kept safe and organized when I was one of the thousand patients that office handled? It must be pretty stressful for the administrative workers too – imagine having to keep track of so many records!

Computers and electronic records are starting to replace traditional paper healthcare records. If your company needs to make the switch to EHR, you have to make sure that the transition will go smoothly. Also, you should be prepared in case the whole process becomes more complicated. Consequently, financial risk management is important. It can help you figure out if you have enough capital to perform the operations required.

Before switching to EHR, you should decide if you will include all patient files in the process. Some of those patients may have changed to a different practice, so converting those files might turn out to be wasteful and unnecessary. At the same time, what if a former patient decides to use your services again? Contacting each person individually may take some time, but might solve this problem.

Another issue to worry about is security. There is a possibility that someone could potentially access confidential files if you outsource the conversion process. Medical information is highly sensitive and personal. It’s tough to outsource, so you might have to hire a good team for all your EHR transitioning needs, instead.

Before taking the necessary steps, you should consider the benefits and the negative aspects of converting to EHR. If it doesn’t prove to be a good option for you, particularly if you’re only running a small practice, you may decide to not go through with it. Just keep in mind that there is a possibility you will have to make the switch sometime in the future to stay competitive.

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