By Mario DiSantis, Senior Vice President, Document Lifecycle Solutions, at HOV Services
Electronic health records have the potential to improve the quality of patient care and records administration, but change isn't always easy. Consider this: conventional wisdom says that crisis is a powerful motivator for change, yet of the 600,000 Americans who have bypass surgeries each year, more than 90 percent are unable to change their lifestyle to mitigate health risks. If people aren't willing to undergo the rigors of change in the face of do or die, how can we expect physician practices to make the transition from paper-based records to electronic medical records, even in light of the availability of federal funding?
As part of the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, $1.2B is available to help hospitals and healthcare providers successfully install and use electronic health records (EHRs). However, even with financial incentives in place, adoption has been slow and providers – especially smaller to mid-sized practices – are struggling with the capital investment and ROI.