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A practice that focuses too much attention on implementing an electronic health record (EHR) may overlook the need for sound training on the system. In our extensive experience with provider practices and IT systems, we found one of the most common causes of failure and dissatisfaction with EHR's has to do with poor training and implementation. Part of this is could be due to vendors who over-sell their product, stressing its plug-and-play characteristics, its built-in, out-of-the-box functionality, and its ease of use.
After getting over the sticker shock of software licensing, hardware costs, and implementation fees, providers and practice managers are confronted with the time intervals involved in training and implementation. In fact we have seen practices that ask what the quickest (not necessarily the best) implementation interval and then cut that in half. Sometimes a practice or facility will choose an arbitrary date in the future a€” say June 30 of this year a€” to be fully up and running on a new EHR system. Selecting an EHR vendor and system the right way takes a long time, several months at least, and after the selection is made, the implementation and training could take even longer. Consolidated MD currently works in numerous electronic health records systems (EHR) and can help your practice be successful with additional training. In this first installment of a series on EMRs, ophthalmic regulatory and legal experts discuss how a strategy for defining and integrating privacy protections is still lacking. Three years after a federal call for most Americans to have electronic medical records within a decade, progress is being made.
Allison Weber Shuren Electronic medical record implementation depends on interoperability, or the capacity of different electronic medical record systems to “talk” to one another.
Attendance will run you from $250 to $550, and, in a surprise move, even speakers are expected to pay $150 for the privilege of attending their own talk. Whether you’re a single-physician practice or large multi-specialty clinic, Practice Partner will improve your efficiency and return on your investment. The Practice Partner electronic health record was developed for physicians by physicians, then refined by feedback from users.
Practice Partner includes progress notes, medication lists, problem lists, past medical history, health maintenance status, images, reports from the laboratory, radiology, EKG and pathology, discharge summaries and user-defined categories. Move the patient from check-in, through the exam and to checkout without ever handling a paper chart. Staff at Stonecreek Family Physicians in Manhattan, Kansas talk about how Practice Partner® EMR allowed them to improve efficiency and save money in their practice. Patient call-backs, prescription refills or authorizations, and outside requests for charts can be handled easily and quickly. Reduce or eliminate transcription costs by entering patient data directly into the electronic health record. Eliminate costs incurred by paper charts – paper, folders, dividers, filing systems, racks and cabinets.


Practice Partner makes it easier to provide more accurate codes and complete documentation by providing templates and clinical macros (detailed blocks of text that can be inserted with the push of a button). Electronic medical records (EMR) are accessible to every authorized staff member, clinical and administrative, from multiple workstations at any time, regardless of others viewing the same chart. With electronic interfaces from laboratories and hospitals, incoming data can be downloaded directly into the patient record, eliminating time-intensive tasks. The completely secure Intranet E-mail messaging system significantly improves the speed and efficiency of communication among employees and providers. Diagnosis-specific templates offer reminders of special protocols and tests for certain conditions. Practice Partner automatically flags abnormal test results and health maintenance reminders each time a chart is opened. Practice Partner faxes a prescription directly to the pharmacy or prints a legible copy, initiates drug-to-drug and drug-to-allergy interactions against an updated medication list, automatically documents the prescription in a progress note, and checks the drug against the patient’s formulary. With its relational database, Practice Partner allows you to query your records for reports.
Practice Partner has built-in security to protect both your medical practice and your patients. Practice Partner Web View is an Internet-based service that enables practices to provide providers, patients and consultants with online access to patient charts and secure communication with Practice Partner® users through the World Wide Web.
Practices should carefully consider the training requirements associated with an EHR before making a selection.
Every provider and practice administrator thinks his or her staff is above average, so they frequently take the recommended training intervals and cut them way down. When you question where they are in the process of contracting with EHR vendors, you may find that they haven’t even started the process seriously, they have just seen a few demos. And since many providers waited all the way through most of 2009 and 2010 to determine the clarification of certification and meaningful use rules, the implementation schedules of many EHR vendors are very backed up with providers who are now jamming the queue. Your staff is just as likely to be less skilled a€” and take longer than the norm a€” when it comes to training and implementation. As electronic files result in better chart documentation and organization, Practice Partner installations pass with flying colors. In the event of a drug recall, you could draw up a list to quickly and easily notify all patients who are taking that medication. Progress notes can be created in pre-formatted notes, by dictation or from a voice-recognition system. You can define access and privileges by staff level and further restrict access to specific segments of the record.
In general, the vendor is responsible for providing training on their product; poorly trained staff can lead to frustration and potential disappointment in the EHR system.


So not only have they not yet even selected a system and contracted with a vendor, they haven’t even received the training and implementation estimates from them.
Our electronic Health Records (EHR) training is intended to help guide a practice in determining staff requirements related to system training.
After all, the application is Windows-based, browser-based, point-and-click, drag-and-drop, has built-in bubble help screens, is intuitive and user-friendly, and all that good stuff. This led to establishing the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONCHIT), which oversees a variety of initiatives designed to develop an electronic medical record network. For ophthalmologists, the standardization of imaging and image-related information is particularly crucial.
CCHIT certified the first 37 ambulatory, or office-based, electronic medical record systems in 2006; to date, CCHIT has certified more than 57 such systems. For example, in August, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and Office of the Inspector General issued exceptions to the federal Self-Referral Law and Anti-Kickback Statute. The exceptions allow certain types of health entities to donate software and training for electronic records to physicians without violating federal anti-kickback and self-referral laws.
Javitt CCHIT certification represents the gold standard for electronic medical records — and a welcome relief for physicians who are contemplating an investment in medical records technology. Javitt, MD, MPH, who was appointed by President Bush to chair the PITAC Health IT initiative, is an ophthalmologist who has been involved in electronic medical records technology for more than 20 years. Physicians, particularly smaller practices, just aren’t going to have the discretionary funds to invest in expensive software and training. So the hope is that if they can obtain the [technology] at a discounted price, they will move toward electronic medical records more quickly.” Privacy and security In 2003, in compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996, HHS issued a rule pertaining to procedures designed to ensure the confidentiality of protected electronic health information, according to an HHS news release. Many of those companies have come and gone, much to the detriment of those who have invested in their products. Shuren pointed out the vulnerability of having a large amount of patient information on computers. Protecting electronic medical records is easier than protecting paper records, but a breach of an electronic system would be “far more devastating” than the theft of paper records, in terms of potential liability, she said.
He called for criminal penalties for breaching electronic medical record systems, such as those in place for hacking into banking systems, he said.



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