Electronic Health Record and Electronic Medical Record
Differentiate between the electronic health record (EHR) and the electronic medical record (EMR). How are they interdependent? Why is it crucial for the EHR to be nationally interoperable?
Electronic Health Record (EHR) and Electronic Medical Record (EMR)
The healthcare industry is one of the sectors affected by the significant change in technology. Healthcare organizations are investing in diverse advanced information technologies to promote the quality of care they provide to their patients, families, and the communities they serve. Electronic health records (EHRs) and electronic medical records (EMRs) are among the technologies that have helped healthcare organizations from paper to digital. EHR and EMR are digital records of patient information, which help healthcare providers to more effectively diagnose patients, minimize medical errors, and provide safer care (Alanazi et al., 2020). The essay aims at differentiating between the digital records of patient information. In addition, the paper discusses how EHRs and EMRs are interdependent and why EHR should be nationally interoperable.
EHR and EMR have some differences. One of them is that EMR usually belongs to a single healthcare organization such as a hospital. Therefore, it connects, communicates, and shares information with the other computers and health information systems found only in that organization. On the contrary, EHRs are not owned by any institution or practitioner. But rather is the property of the patient who can access the record and add information (Burke & Weill, 2005). Secondly, EMRs are used by providers in specific healthcare for diagnosis and treatment whereas EHRs are designed to allow healthcare providers to share a patient’s information with other authorized providers and staff from more than one healthcare organization, both nationally and internationally (Burke & Weill, 2005). In addition, electronic health records (EHRs) are a source for research in clinical environments, patient outcomes, public health, and health services unlike EMRs (Burke & Weill, 2005).
The two healthcare information technologies are interdependent. This is because the EMR is required to enhance communication and coordination in a specific organization or practice, while EHR allows providers from diverse healthcare organizations and practices to communicate and coordinate patient care (Burke & Weill, 2005). Therefore, for EHRs to be fully interoperable, the EMRs should be effective to allow communication and coordination within a healthcare organization or practice.
It is important for EHRs to be nationally interoperable. This information technology since comprises all patient information and also contains information from all the healthcare providers and organizations, which provide care to the patient. Therefore, when EHR becomes nationally and internationally interoperable, it enhances communication among many practitioners and institutions. It allows them to access information about patients and healthcare providers efficiently (Burke & Weill, 2005). The second benefit is continuity of care. As EHRs get interoperable, the patient’s health information will be available anywhere there is a computer on the network (Burke & Weill, 2005). Thirdly, it will enhance the quality of care offered to patients as it will allow healthcare providers to know the patient’s full medical history and can thus provide enhanced patient care. Lastly, when EHR becomes nationally interoperable, it will enable patients to be more in control of their health care. Patients will be able to access their electronic records and even share their medical records with other healthcare professionals to receive care (Anshari, 2019).
Conclusively, EHRs and EMRs help healthcare providers to more effectively diagnose patients, minimize medical errors, and provide safer care. These digital records of patient information have differences. EMRs usually belong to a single healthcare organization while EHRs are not owned by any institution or practitioner. The two healthcare information technologies are interdependent. This is because the EMR is required to enhance communication and coordination in a specific organization or practice, which is crucial for EHR interoperability. It is important for the EHR to be nationally interoperable since it promotes continuity of care, communication among many practitioners and institutions and allows patients to be more in control of their health care.
Alanazi, B., Butler-Henderson, K., & Alanazi, M. R. (2020). Factors Influencing Healthcare Professionals’ Perception towards EHR/EMR Systems in Gulf Cooperation Council Countries: A Systematic Review. Oman Medical Journal, 35(6), e192. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/pmc7586642/
Anshari, M. (2019). Redefining electronic health records (EHR) and electronic medical records (EMR) to promote patient empowerment. IJID (International Journal on Informatics for Development), 8(1), 35-39. http://ejournal.uin-suka.ac.id/saintek/ijid/article/download/1414/1540
Burke, L., & Weill, B. (2005). Information technology for the health professions. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall. http://myresource.phoenix.edu/secure/resource/HCIS245R1/Information%20Technology%20for%20the%20