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By: Stephen O'Connor

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April 1st, 2013

Three Things You Did Not Know About Specialty EHR

Electronic Health Records

EHR SpecialtiesWhile the rate of adoption of electronic medical records (EHR) among healthcare providers is on the rise due to the EHR incentive payments offered by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), general practitioners and family practice offices lead in the adoption of health information technology. Based upon the results of a recent survey, experts expect that 80 percent of general and family practices in the United States will have implemented EHR, which is a much higher rate of adoption than that of specialty practices. The primary reason that these general practice are ahead of other areas of medical practice is that until a few years ago, EHR software was not specialized, so it tended to be onerous for specialty practices to customize EHR software.  

The Advances in Specialty EHR

During the past few years, EHR software that is tailored to meet the needs of particular specialty areas has become available. Some of the advantages of specialty EHR include the following:

  • Forms have fields that are relevant to the area of practice. One of the complaints that medical specialists had about the early EHR software was there were required fields that did not apply to their specialty needed to be completed before moving to another screen. This made the early EHR cumbersome for specialists to use.
  • The new specialty EHR can track the Clinical Quality Measures relevant to the patient population served by the specialist. This is an essential requirement for demonstrating Stage II Meaningful Use.
  • Specialty EHR require less time to implement than EHR software developed for a general practice since they do not have to be customized. 

As medical specialist discover the benefits of specialty EHR, their rate of adoption and implementation is likely to increase. 

Key Takeaways 

  • Early EHR software was not developed to meet the needs to specific areas of practice, which led to specialty practices being late to adopt EHRs.
  • Since the required fields in the specialty EHR are developed especially for a particular field of medicine, clinicians find the software much easier to use that the early EHR user interface.
  • Specialty EHR facilitates tracking the Clinical Quality Measures that healthcare professions need to report to CMS.

 

References:
http://www.informationweek.com/healthcare/electronic-medical-records/family-physicians-lead-in-ehr-adoption/240148187
http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/databriefs/db98.htm

 

About Stephen O'Connor

As a Director of Digital Marketing at Advanced Data Systems Corporation, Stephen spends his day's planning, writing, & designing resources for the modern healthcare professional. He has a strong affinity for snow crab legs, the ocean, and Rutgers Football.

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