Musings of a Dinosaur

A Family Doctor in solo private practice; I may be going the way of the dinosaur, but I'm not dead yet.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Now *This* is an EHR

First and most important, I'd like to welcome the Tundra PA back to work after her recent surgery. Although she's back in the saddle again, she's working from home for the moment, thanks to one kick-ass system of technology.

In addition to receiving faxed reports from remote villages, her telemedicine program allows her to view EKGs as well as images or brief video clips taken with digital cameras. Furthermore, her patient database gives her immediate access to:
[A] health summary for each patient, with demographic information, chronic diagnoses, prescriptions filled, lab results for the past two years, radiology results for the past five years, surgical histories, and more. It is a thorough thumbnail of the patient...
Wow. Now that would be useful even here in the wild, untamed expanses of suburban Philadelphia.

TPA correctly points out that this is not technically an electronic medical record (EMR) in that individual patient visits are not recorded via computer. However it is an EHR in the best sense of the word. Definitions:
EMR: The electronic record of health-related information on an individual that is created, gathered, managed, and consulted by licensed clinicians and staff from a single organization who are involved in the individual’s health and care.

EHR: The aggregate electronic record of health-related information on an individual that is created and gathered cumulatively across more than one health care organization and is managed and consulted by licensed clinicians and staff involved in the individual’s health and care.

If the Obama administration -- or anyone else, for that matter -- wants to go about setting up a similar system down here in the lower 48, sign me up!

In case anyone wonder$ what'$ $topping them, the an$wer is $imple: whoever'$ EHR $y$tem is cho$en to be the official repo$itory of American'$ health information $tand$ to make out, $hall we $ay, quite well financially.

In any event, please join me in welcoming TPA back into the fold. You've been missed.


At Mon Feb 09, 06:57:00 AM, Blogger OHN said...

*note to self--design EHR system and get rich.

At Mon Feb 09, 12:57:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The other thing stopping them is that EMRs are subject to legal protections as private, while EHRs are not. Anyone with an existing medical condition or health history that affects his or her insurability or employability, or whose health history includes anything that others will make assumptions or moral judgements about, wants no part of an EHR.

At Tue Feb 24, 01:13:00 AM, Blogger The Tundra PA said...

Dino--wow, how did I miss this post two whole weeks ago?? I never comment on blogs much anymore, but I'm always lurking yours. So glad I scrolled down and found it. Thanks for the welcome back! If I'm lucky I'll make it through the rest of this year before the other hip goes bionic. Then I'll make TSA's alarms ring before I even get to the checkpoint.


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