The Biotech & Healthcare IT Blog

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Health Records Go Digital

Health Records Go Digital : "Cooper Clinic's Dr. Todd Stewart likens President Bush�s call for electronic medical records for most Americans to former President Kennedy�s call for a Moon shot.

It looks simple but, in fact, is very complex, he said. �But the first step is for somebody to say �We�re going there,�� Stewart, an internist, said.

Even more than increasing administrative efficiencies, implementing EMR is about improving patient care and safety, Stewart and other area health care officials said.

In April, Bush called for nationwide health information technology within 10 years, created the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology and asked for a plan. On July 21, Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy G. Thompson released an outline of the subsequent report.

Its goals include: Bringing information tools to the point of care, particularly by investing in EMR systems; networking doctors to a health information infrastructure and allowing records to follow patients; allowing patients more access and involvement in decisions; and improving the health of the population via expanded public health monitoring capabilities, quality of care measurement and bringing research advances into practice faster."


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