Digital Health Records Not Fulfilling Promise

doctor digital tablet computer

The failure of health information information technology to quickly deliver on its promise is not caused by its lack of potential, but rather because of the shortcomings in the design of the IT systems that are currently in place.

Arthur L. Kellerman, MD, MPH

Electronic health records have not led to the expected reductions in costs or improvements in healthcare. This is the finding of a RAND Corporation analysis. A 2005 RAND analysis had predicted that broad adoption of health care information technology could save $81 billion (USD) in annual costs in the USA.

The report saud that in the 7 years since the original report, health care spending in the USA has increased by $800 billion [they do not note how much electronic health records may have helped or hurt that number}, and feels that improvements are needed: 1)Health data stored in one system should be retrievable by others; 2) Patients should have ready access to their electronic health information; and 3) Heath information technology systems must be re-engineered to aid the work of clinicians, not hinder it. I’m Dr. Michael Hunter.

The small print: The material presented herein is informational only, and is not designed to provide specific guidance for an individual. Please check with a valued health care provider with any questions or concerns. As for me, I am a Harvard- , Yale- and UPenn-educated radiation oncologist, and I practice in the Seattle, WA (USA) area. I feel genuinely privileged to be able to share with you. If you enjoyed today’s offering, please consider clicking the follow button at the bottom of this page.

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Harvard AB Yale MD UPenn Radiation Oncology Radiation Oncologist, Seattle area

2 thoughts on “Digital Health Records Not Fulfilling Promise”

  1. It’s also because our health care system is so fragmented. I am a retired nurse manager from Group Health Cooperative, an integrated system that has had their electronic medical record in place for about ten years. I can email my provider, make appointments, check my lab results and order my refills online. And they arrive within a few days. It may be more challenging to implement overall, but it is definitely well worth the effort.

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