Electronic Health Record Essay

Electronic Health Record Essay

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Present day electronic health record is a culmination of decades of effort put forth to digitizing health records. However, the goal, to compile patient medical history so it can be readily viewed and managed in one place is yet to be fully realized.
The first EHR systems, circa 1960s, were known as clinical information systems and influenced later systems because their processing speed and flexibility allowed many users in the system at once [3].
Around the same time, the University of Utah and 3M jointly developed Health Evaluation through Logical Processing (HELP), one of the first clinical decision support systems. Then, in 1968, the development of the Computer Stored Ambulatory Record (COSTAR) began at Massachusetts General Hospital in collaboration with Harvard. It was designed to perform the data management functions needed by a group practice in the care of ambulatory patients.
Then in the 1970s, the federal government began using an enterprise-wide information system built around EHR called Veterans Health Information Systems and Technology Architecture (VistA) throughout the United States Department of Veterans Affairs medical system, known as the Veterans Health Administration. Formerly known as Decentralized Hospital Computer Program (DHCP), VistA is the primary repository of clinical, administrative/financial, and infrastructure data in the VHA, supporting both ambulatory and inpatient care. It is consistently well reviewed for reducing medical errors and improving health-record component integration [4].
Starting in 1980s, a more concerted effort towards increased use of EHR started to take place. The Institute of Medicine (IOM) recognized the need for serious analysis of paper health records and, in 1991 release...

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...rtment of Veteran Affairs. http://www4.va.gov/OCA/testimony/hvac/soi/090714RB.asp. Accessed February 15, 2011.
Kohn LT, Corrigan JM, Donaldson MS, eds; Institute of Medicine. To Err is Human: Building a Safer Health System. Washington, DC: National Academies Press: 1999.
Health Level International. About HL7. http://www.hl7.org/about/index.cfm?ref=common. Accessed February 15, 2011.
Certification Commission for Health Information Technology web site. http://www.cchit.org. Accessed February 15, 2011.
US Department of Health and Human Services. Electronic health records and meaningful use. http://healthit.hhs.gov/portal/server.pt?open=512&objID=2996&mode=2. Accessed February 15, 2011.
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Meaningful use. http://www.cms.gov/EHRIncentivePrograms/30_Meaningful_Use.asp#TopOfPage. Accessed February 15, 2011.

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