January 18, 2013
Electronic Health Record system (EHRs), which is the next order in clinical and operational documentation, is perhaps one of the significant technology additions to have happened to the health care industry. While care providers seem to have been convinced of its ability to elevate clinical and operational efficiency to a new level, they may still be inheriting malpractice liability risk more than ever before. Amongst many things that are intrinsic to EHR system, transition, design, implementation, application, and control issues threaten physicians’ immunity against lawsuits with respect to breach of HIPAA-mandated patient privacy and security.
As physicians begin to transit from manual to EHR-managed data centers, patient-specific data may be vulnerable to proliferation, exclusion, or faulty conversion during the process of transfer from paper to electronic medium. As a result of this inappropriate conversion, patients’ clinical management may suffer from inaccurate clinical decisions. When patients’ care gets compromised on account of such inapt transition, physicians will certainly be held accountable legally. Therefore, it is important to undertake data transition comprehensively as well as have an EHR system that can entirely accommodate such data transfer.
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More than being liable for lacking in data conversion, it is the choice your EHR design, customization, and implementation process that could either make or break your case – those EHR systems that tend to deviate from HIPAA’s requirements may spell trouble for physicians who happen to own them or may be opting for such EHR platforms without knowing the eventual consequences. Therefore, it is essential that you exercise caution before deciding on an EHR platform – it is not the price or somebody else’s provocation that should drive your decision but how far you can sustain integrity in clinical documentation.
Significantly, physicians may have to contend with control and security issues – with EHR systems chances of data proliferation, hacking, and unauthorized access are going to increase. Physicians – who are generally non-inquisitive of data coming in from EHR channels – may not entirely be informed of adverse happenings at their EHR systems. Therefore, more than being happy with implementation, it is important that you monitor the functioning of your EHR platform on an on-going-basis. It is also important that you commission a support staff that can conduct and protect EHR operations as required by HIPAA mandate.
Though a bill that protects providers from malpractice and other liability (if they happen to use certified EHRs) is being contemplated on, physicians would still have to continue to safeguard integrity and the accuracy of the patient’s medical record till then.
Medicalbillersandcoders.com is essentially helping out hospital management or physicians practices that may be vulnerable to EHR-specific malpractice liability risk. The significant advantage of partnering with us is our ability to leverage our tactical knowledge in EHR implementation with technology alliances with some of the best EHR manufacturers. More than getting your EHR systems customized, it is our catalytic role in assisting transition to EHR-enabled clinical and operational documentation that is instrumental in our being a leading consortium across the 50 states in the U.S.
EMR / EHR / Health IT