Access to Electronic Health Records May Influence Care

Unlike medical records kept in paper charts, electronic health records (EHR) provide numerous access points to clinicians to review a patient’s medical history. A new study has found access to electronic health records in acute care situations may influence the care given to that patient, and in some cases, failure to review the EHR could have adversely affected the medical management. The findings are reported in the May 2014 edition http://content.healthaffairs.org/content/33/5/800.abstract of Health Affairs.

Wouldn’t review of the EHR be one of the more critical items on any modern medical care checklist? Whats perhaps more interesting is that this is a finding. Does it reflect in some way a deep skepticism about a technology that you might test that it has no, or negative, influence on the primary decision use cases it was intended for? But unfortunately these questions exist. One does see studies that identify unintended consequences of an EHR and perhaps negative patient effects for some use cases.

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