Wednesday, January 06, 2010

electronic health records

Remember almost a year ago?

“… the Obama administration plans to spend $19 billion to accelerate the use of computerized medical records in doctors’ offices. Medical experts agree that electronic patient records, when used wisely, can help curb costs and improve care….” How to Make Electronic Medical Records a Reality, The New York Times, Feb 2009

For seven years I have had my yearly physical in the same medical office and my blood work sent to the same lab. For seven years I paid my co-pay at the time of my physical and medical insurance paid for everything else.

Welcome to the era of Electronic Health Records! I got bills! After way too much time wasted on hold and or trying to get through electronic voice prompts, hallelujah! I reached a living human being.

Apparently the foundation of training for the transition to electronic health records is ‘finger pointing’. Little to no training has gone into how to fix anything. Unless of course the plan is for the patient to spend hours on hold or trying to get through electronic voice prompts to figure out the problem and fix it themselves.

It seems electronic records are only as good as the people that have to begrudgingly input data into them, apparently as little as possible or as inaccurately as possible considering the constant interruptions of any physician’s office.

Even Patti got a certified letter containing a bill at her care facility requiring her signature!!! Theoretically an impossible scenario, that is, until the era of electronic health records.

Dear Mr. President … any room in that $19 billion to reimburse “we the patients” hours on hold?

Caregivingly Yours, Patrick Leer
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1 comment:

  1. Another example of the way technology enhances our lives. If it's done by computer, it's got to be better, right?


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