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Privacy And Confidentiality In The Electronic Medical Record

1939 words - 8 pages

It was just yesterday when Electronic health records was just introduced in healthcare industry. People were not ready to accept it due to higher cost and consumption of time associated in training people and adopting new technology. Despite of all this criticism, use of Internet and Electronic Health records are now gaining its popularity among health care professionals, as it is the most effective way to communicate with patient and colleagues. More and more hospitals and clinics are getting rid of paper base filling system and investing in cloud base storage.
According to HIMSS The Electronic Health Record (EHR) is a longitudinal electronic record of patient health information generated by one or more encounters in any care delivery setting. It includes information from patient demographics, medications, to the laboratory reports. Introduction of Electronic Medical Records in healthcare organizations was to improve the quality care and to lessen the cost by standardizing the means of communication and reducing the errors. However, it raises the “eyebrows” of many when it comes to patient confidentiality and privacy among healthcare organization.
The Problem is
1. Transfer of Information- The problem is remote access of the health records and pooling of large number of data for various purposes like research program and lab work, may lead to an error and confusion.
2. Lack of information centralization- Many patients keep their own records of blood sugars, weight and blood pressure by using various Internet tools. However, healthcare providers cannot access these records because they cannot streamline those records with EHR.
3. Security theft - Internet tools like Google health and Microsoft Vault provides convenience to patients but also provides easy accessibility to identity thieves.
The Solutions are still under process; government and other institutional bodies have come up various rules and regulations to get to hold on these issues but none prove 100% successful so far.

In my research methodology, I have gathered relevant data from the online journals and articles from online databases in order to understand the role and importance of implementing EHR in healthcare system while respecting patient privacy and confidentiality.
Identify the resources – All the literature has been reviewed by searching databases including PubMed and Google Scholar that provide links to various journals, pictures, and articles. The following keywords were used in the search: HIPAA, Privacy and Confidentiality in the Electronic Medical Record, Internet and HealthCare, Past, present and Future of EHR.

For many years paper based system rules the healthcare industry, they were considered to be most convenient. However, they were very time consuming, difficult to store for longer period and highly unsafe and confusing as they were maintained manually.
On the other hand, the electronic health record (EHR) that seems a...

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