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EMR Advantages and Disadvantages

written by: MandaSpring • edited by: Anurag Ghosh • updated: 12/16/2008

An objective look into the benefits and problems with Electronic Medical Records (EMR).

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    As a brief overview, let me take the time to give an EMR definition in a nutshell. EMR (Electronic Medical Record) is an information sharing system for both patients and doctors. The doctors add their data, research, prescriptions, etc. into this web based file and the patient, as well as the patient’s other doctors, have access from anywhere in the world.

    As with any new system there are advantages and disadvantages. This technology can make storing and sharing information easier and more efficient not to mention convenient. But unfortunately, there are disadvantages with EMR.

    EMR Advantages

    The advantages of EMR are extensive and no one can argue that point. Just some of the over all benefits that EMR provides doctors and patients world wide include, but are not limited to:

    1. An enhanced quality of care due to the amount of information at hand from every available and viable medical source.

    2. Faster and more efficient diagnosis and treatments.

    3. More convenient data trail; paperwork can often go uncompleted but electronically stored is faster an easier therefore it gets done effectively.

    4. When medical audits take place all information is readily available making workflow and procedures faster and smoother.

    EMR Disadvantages

    As I mentioned before there are some disadvantages to EMR. Of course, none are so serious that it will hinder the rapid growth and use of EMR on a more permanent level but for now the technology merely needs to be mastered. So, what are some of these problems?

    1. Financial difficulties to upgrade to the EMR such as buying software, etc..

    2. Training to utilize this new system and understand the capabilities of this technology.

    3. Technology factors like making sure that it is integrated with widely used systems and computer software for ease.

    4. Security matters including keeping the information safe.

    5. Legal issues meaning privacy and confidentiality of records, who should and could have access to the important data, etc.

    EMR and the Military

    The military is probably one of the best reasons for this to work and why it is not going to be put to rest. Military personnel already use EMR. It is the only thing that makes sense for them. They are positioned all over the world and get sick and wounded. At a moments notice the doctor that sees them must be able to access all data on prior medical history, prescription, lab results, absolutely everything in order to effectively treat them.

    Conclusion

    So, now you are more educated on the advantages and disadvantages of EMR. With so many skilled professionals working everyday to ensure safety, stability and a compatible structure for world wide use we are likely to benefit from this very soon. The medical information and research future of tomorrow depends upon this method of data storage and clinical sharing.


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