More and more medical coding companies are equipping themselves with coders and technicians that are trained and certified in electronic health records so they can meet the growing demand for such medical coding services. Is your health care facility ready to meet the new challenges you will face with EHR and medical coding?
The transition from paper to electronic medical records has been central to the aim of overhauling health care in America. The Obama administration is spending billions of dollars to encourage doctors and hospitals to switch to electronic records to track patient care.
There are definitely opposing sides to the benefits of electronic health records. It has become quite the heated debate among advocates and opponents of this type of medical record management system.
Advocates contend that electronic records systems will improve patient care and lower costs through better coordination of medical services. Those that oppose the system say there are financial issues with electronic medical record implementation, changes in workflow, temporary loss of productivity, privacy and security concerns, among the unforeseen complications.
Nevertheless, this is the wave of the future for health information technology. So it’s better to be proactive than reactive.
There will certainly be issues that will need to be resolved, as with any change, but the current financial benefits through the incentive program might be enough motivation to change your health records management. As it stands, a doctor can receive as much as $44,000 for adopting electronic records, while a hospital could be paid as much as $2 million in the first year of its adoption.
Medicare is currently charged with managing the incentive program that encourages the adoption of electronic medical records systems. In order to qualify for the incentive payments, doctors and hospitals must demonstrate that their EHR systems lead to better patient care, meeting a so-called “meaningful use standard”. An example of “meaningful use standard” would be using medical records software that will identify dangerous drug interactions between the drug one physicians is about to prescribe with a drug the patient has listed in their record that has been prescribed by another physician.
Clearly, the advantages of electronic health records have far reaching tentacles with regards to a patient’s health care. Once implemented fully, the diagnostic possibilities are endless. Each doctor would be able to view the patient’s entire health history in one place and perhaps connect the dots like never before.