Electronic Medical Records Now Offering HIPAA-Compliant Social Media-Style Messaging

April 25, 2012
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Electronic Medical Records (EMR) – digital versions of the paper chart used in doctor’s offices containing the medical and treatment history of a patient in one practice – make patient record keeping easier and more accurate. They allow clinics to easily identify which patients are due for preventive screenings and check how patients are doing on blood pressure readings and vaccines.

Electronic Medical Records (EMR) – digital versions of the paper chart used in doctor’s offices containing the medical and treatment history of a patient in one practice – make patient record keeping easier and more accurate. They allow clinics to easily identify which patients are due for preventive screenings and check how patients are doing on blood pressure readings and vaccines.

electronic-medical-recordsWhen using EMRs, doctors can use a desktop, laptop or electronic clipboard with specialized software that allows them to review a patient’s complete history immediately and enter information electronically.

Now, this type of technology is going one step further. One EMR company in the United States has launched a HIPAA-compliant messaging feature within its EMR to enable physicians, nurses and medical providers to communicate with colleagues outside their practices. The service replicates social media-style messaging and is meant to improve medical collaboration between physicans, and ensure the continuity of patient care.

What makes this so big is that it may be able to reduce the estimated 195,000 deaths each year attributed to preventable medical errors. With this new HIPAA-approved technology, this messaging system can potentially save lives by allowing instant communication of key patient information between doctors. Before this, standard email, IM and other forms of online communication were off-limits to medical professionals because they’re not HIPAA-secure for relaying sensitive patient data.

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