July 26, 2011 Leave a comment
By Matthew Kopetsky
In the 1-19-11 Time Magazine article, “Are Electronic Health Systems Cost Effective? Not So Much,” Alice Park provides a slew of reasons why not to jump on the Electronic Health Record (EHR) bandwagon. Park references 53 EHR reviews conducted by Dr. Aziz Sheikh at the University of Edinburgh which supposedly provide “little or weak evidence to support the massive investment that policy makers have made in electronic systems such as electronic health records” and rather supports home-grown health record technology.
Articles such as these can be scary news to healthcare consumers amid a federal stimulus package investing $19.2 billion in EHR implementation. I wonder sometimes, however, if hospitals and physicians hear enough of the right reasons to implement an expensive EHR system. While the long-term benefits of EHRs (continuity of care and universal web-based access to personal health records) may be years away, many short term benefits can be achieved by emphasizing the following.