As of late Electronic Medical Records or EMR has been a topic of discussion amongst Santa Barbara physican and physican practices. The reason is the potential influx of money, through the ARRA, that will be offered to physican practices that can show “Meaningful Use” of an EMR system. ARRA stands for American Recovery and Reinvestment Act which was signed into law in February 2009. Rather than rehash what is offered through other sources about what consitutes meanful use and how much money these physicans can expect, instead I want to focus this article on what the Santa Barbara physican community at large needs to know before moving to EMR.
EMR is often times refered to as EHR(Electronic Health Records) and is typically associated with practice managed system although technically the two can operate independently. Also of importance is the concept of an Health Information Exchange abbrivated HIE. To summarize, practice management helps with the schedule and billing of a practice, EMR/EHR deals with digitizing all aspects of the visit/proceedure and HIE involves the exchange of this information with other medical entities electronically.
What you need to know before moving to an EMR in Santa Barbara:
There are three components that need to be addressed when moving to an EMR; Hardware, Software, and Support. If you were to call up an EMR software vendor and ask to purchase their EMR solution their only incentive is to sell you on the EMR software and give you hardware specs specifically for the EMR system. However, this is only a small percentage of the total solution that most physicans are looking for when going EMR. For example, the physicans will want wireless support to go along with his/her tablet pc’s. The physicans will want backups and to understand and make sure best practices are being done since now their entire business is dependant on electronic data. They physicans will want to make sure they have the approiate security in place. The physicans might want to learn about other technologies that can easly be added on the new infastructure. The physicans will want to know that they have fast response time and someone local who can solve their problems. The physicans might want helping learning how they can outsource their Billing or Lab work and how they can access their systems remotely(at a friends house or on their iPhone from the beach).
This is where CIO Solutions can help. Gives us a call at 805-692-6700 for a free onsite consultation.