This week in health IT news, a study by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology finds that only 52% of patients are offered online medical records and only a quarter of those access them due to privacy concerns. In addition, EHRs for children can be improved for better patient care, according to an article in The Hill, and the Arizona Community Physicians (ACP) has transformed its delivery of health services by speeding caregiver access to EHRs. Continue reading for more.
A Quarter of Patients Do Not Access Data Over Patient Privacy Concerns
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) studied individual use of online medical records and technology and found that 52 percent of US citizens were offered access to an online medical record by a healthcare provider or insurer in 2017. Of those, only a little more than half of them actually viewed those records online. In fact, a full 25% of those offered records online did not access that information because of privacy/security concerns. Other reasons cited for not accessing online medical records included a preference to speak with their healthcare provider directly, not having a need to use their online medical records and not having access to the website.
Read the full story here.
There is an Opportunity on the Horizon to Improve Health IT Safety for Kids
New federal criteria for electronic medical records used in the care of children provide a golden opportunity to make digital records more effective for the youngest and often most vulnerable patients. Currently, the way electronic health records (EHRs) are designed and formatted — and the way that doctors and nurses use them — have created some safety hazards, from missing important test results and drug allergies to ordering the wrong medication. The upside of using EHRs in the care of young patients includes the ability to capture pediatric-specific data, such as whether a child has been screened for lead exposure or is up-to-date on vaccines. They also can track key indicators, such as whether a child’s heart rate, weight, and height fall within the normal range for the child’s age. However, these types of uses of EHRs, are the very factors that can increase the potential for unintentional harm — especially for children.
Read the story here.
Arizona Community Physicians Modernizes Infrastructure, Speeds Applications to Improve Patient Care
Arizona Community Physicians (ACP) has teamed with cStor and NetApp to transform the delivery of health offerings and services by speeding caregiver access to nearly 700,000 real-time patient records. ACP needed to modernize its infrastructure when caregivers began experiencing problems with electronic health record (EHR) and health-management solutions. The group’s infrastructure wasn’t equipped to handle the enormous quantity of data generated by lab results, scanned documents and other sources. As a result, ACP’s caregivers sometimes could not reliably access and update patient records. The end result of this transformation and modernization effort was that the 50-location health group saw an immediate improvement in speed and performance as well as ensuring it had a robust backup
Read the story here.