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Carroll County Memorial Hospital (CCMH) has partnered with Cerner Corporation, one of the world’s largest healthcare software companies, to design and implement their new Electronic Hospital Record (EHR) system. CCMH plans to have the program up and running on Wednesday, Sept. 1, with a campaign titled “GO LIVE.” CCMH staff have been working since April to get the system ready.
EHR contains the same information that medical caregivers traditional have recorded on paper. By 2015, all hospitals in the U.S. will be required to use EHR that is certified under the “Meaningful Use” standards approved by Congress earlier in the year. Physicians and Hospitals that do not implement certified systems will be penalized in their reimbursement.
“We will be the first hospital of our size in the area to comply with these mandates,” said Jeff Tindle, Associate Administrator and CFO of CCMH.
EHR boasts several advantages, according to spokespersons for CCMH.
“Physicians and your healthcare team will have more access to information then they have ever before. “Your visit will actually not feel much different to what you have experienced before,” stated Tindle in a statement regarding EHR. “Your physician will actually have more information about you in front of them, so they will be able to provide you better care, as opposed to flipping through multiple paper charts trying to track down your last visits, previous lab results, etc. The only change will be the tools the doctor uses to access your information. Instead of working from a paper chart, your physician will be working from a computer to review your information.”
Information will be up-to-date; there is no delay as handwritten notes are transcribed and test results and medical histories are recorded directly into your EHR. Prescriptions will be sent electronically to your pharmacy.
Security measures are built into the system
“With the paper medical records, the record is potentially available to anyone who happens to be within distance of accessing, whether they have permission or not,” CCMH further explained. “With an electronic health record, your data is safely stored and only accessible to those that you have given permission to access it. This also adds an extra layer of security by leaving record of who has viewed a patient’s information.”
Another advantage is a cost savings.
“With traditional paper medical records you were often charged a fee by a physician’s office to have them fax or mail a copy of your record. Electronic storage allows you to securely access your record at your convenience whenever and wherever you choose. It also allows you to grant access to new physicians/specialty doctors, should you need to do so.”
“The bottom line is an improved safety and efficiency of patient care at CCMH” said Tindle.