As with all technological breakthroughs, EMR software – solutions that maintain electronic medical records – have its fair share of cynics. In this article, you will find five of the most common myths surrounding EMR solutions, dispelled by the actual facts.
Myth 1: EMR software is expensive.
Fact: While installing EMR systems may seem expensive at the outset, it results in tremendous cost savings in the long term. These savings come from:
- Decreased need to purchase paper
- Greater savings in worker time
- Elimination of staff needed to maintain paper-based records
- Elimination of unnecessary medication
Also, a quick calculation will prove that hiring an IT person costs about $60,000-$80,000 while an IT service costs $3500-9500 a year. If you choose to handle the function yourself, you end up spending both valuable time and money managing your IT infrastructure. Not only does a professional EMR solution enable you to focus on your core occupation of providing quality medical care but it also helps you in doing so by taking over many of your administrative responsibilities.
Myth 2: Making medical data available over the Internet poses a huge security risk.
Fact: As long as your EMR solution fulfills these three major criteria of data security, you don’t have much to worry about:
- The applications used to access the records must be secure.
- The network over which the records are transferred must be secure.
- Sensitive records in the database should be encrypted.
Myth 3: Staff would object to EMR software.
Fact: Research shows that instead of inspiring employee attrition, EMR software actually attracts staff. The simple reason behind this is that through the use of EMR solutions, workers are able to devote more time to their passion, which is providing healthcare, rather than doing paperwork. All EMR software needs for successful implementation is for the employees to learn about the advantages it represents.
Myth 4: Using computers interferes with physician-patient relationships.
Fact: While cynics portray insensitive visuals of physicians staring into computer screens instead of attending to patients, the fact is that today, patients have come to expect thorough documentation and specific information on how to improve their own health. Using EMR software, you can pull up information about the patient and his illness with the click of a mouse. You can also discuss the treatment plan, all the while involving him, with the data available on-screen.
Myth 5: EMRs are just another passing trend.
Fact: The sheer advantages of maintaining EMRs show that the system is here to stay. In an era of information explosion, EMR solutions help physicians to make informed decisions. Besides, increased governmental support, reduced costs and ease of accessing and sharing information will make EMR software indispensable in the not-so-distant future.
Medicare already provides bonuses to those who do well with their Hierarchical Condition Categories coding and other medical insurers are likely to follow suit. EMR systems make this tracking easier, enabling users to reap the benefits of pay-for-performance measures tied to healthcare reimbursement.
The benefits of EMR software far outweigh the time it takes to get used to the new technology. Jump onto the EMR bandwagon and become one of the early benefit-reapers!