7 Benefits of an EMR System For DoctorsAugust 05 2021
Modern problems require modern solutions, even in healthcare - especially in healthcare.
Medical records management has always been an integral part of medical practices. It includes, but is not limited to a patient's history and medical information, prescriptions and medications, clinical diagnoses, test results and clinical findings. Managing medical records truly helps both the physician and the patients alike. Good medical records management system is beneficial to making quick medical decisions as well as life and death situations.
The traditional way of handling medical records is with the use of paper records to maintain an organized system for filing. It requires more time, effort and manpower just to get a simple job done. Yet even with that, medical mistakes still occur because of unavoidable human error. As natural as that may seem, faulty handling of medical records can lead to serious financial penalties and worse, lawsuits.
These inefficiencies may also lead to slower productivity, incomplete tasks and might be a sign that a healthcare provider or company is already behind the times. And we don’t want that to happen, do we?
This is where Electronic Medical Records (EMR) comes in.
EMR contains digital information that includes a patient's medical history, medications and prescriptions, diagnoses, allergies, lab results and clinical notes. It’s a digital record of all of the information healthcare providers need to know about their patients. EMRs are used widely around the globe, including here in the Philippines. According to Frost & Sullivan, new technologies continue to make their way into the healthcare systems in Asia-Pacific regions, because they hold the potential to further improve clinical and operational efficiencies. EMR systems in the Philippines are newer compared to western countries, which may be challenging yet not impossible to learn and eventually master.
An EMR System does everything a traditional approach does but better. Here are several reasons why:
1. Save Up on Storage Spaces
Healthcare companies invest in storage spaces for their filing needs. EMRs help lessen company expenses by digitally storing all of the patients’ information. Filing expenses like papers, cabinets, and storage rooms can now be used for medical supplies, health equipment and more important investments.
2. Eliminates Misfiled or Lost Patient Records
Unavoidable human errors in paper handling cannot be completely prevented. A common example would be, a healthcare staff might miss putting a patient’s important file in the filing cabinet or worse misfile the record. By integrating EMR systems in the Philippines, access to patient records will be controlled and easier to access because they can be viewed digitally anytime and anywhere a physician or a patient may need it.
3. Legible and Accurate Clinical Notes
The main purpose of clinical notes is to communicate the current status of a patient with either the patient himself or other healthcare professionals. These are reports, billings and even handwritten notes made by healthcare providers. If you write notes by hand, extra time must be allotted to ensure that medical notes are accurate and can be easily understood.
The healthcare environment is fast-paced and hectic, therefore notes are most times hard to read and understand, but EMR systems can help with that. With digital note-taking systems, miscommunication can be lessened and precise information can be delivered more quickly.
4. Faster Availability of Laboratory and Test Results
The manual process of reviewing and tracking lab results is time-consuming for medical staff, physicians and patients. Carrying a bulk of lab results is a hassle for most patients, especially those who are travelling from one testing clinic to another.
Good thing, EHR systems in the Philippines have integrated laboratory and test results for easier access and viewing wherever and whenever they may be needed. When results are electronically received, both patients and physicians are updated automatically resulting in swift interpretation and diagnoses.
5. Improved Prescriptions Through Pharmacy Interface
There’s nothing worse than patients going into pharmacies, handing over their prescription to a pharmacy staff only to be informed that the staff does not understand what the prescription says. When a pharmacy interface is integrated into an EMR system, reading prescriptions becomes more efficient and faster. This will boost patient satisfaction holistically because of the one-stop process where physicians are being notified when medicines are bought and or double-checking of pharmacists for possible allergies so that incidents are proactively handled.
6. Secures Protection from Unseen Circumstances
Everything needs to be secured nowadays. Back-ups are available everywhere as well as in EMR systems. Natural disasters cannot be virtually predicted. As much as we want it, it cannot be prevented from happening as well. Thankfully, EMR systems in the Philippines ensure records are protected from damage and loss when disasters happen. Considering that healthcare demands are much higher when a patient is affected by natural disasters, physicians can remain confident because they have access to the medical records of their patients to help them deliver care to as many as possible.
7. Integration of Medical Billing and Coding
Medical billing and coding are thorough processes that require precise and accurate data entry. A billing system lets healthcare facilities quickly find billing records without having to sort through piles of paper. Electronic medical billing and coding simplify tough functions like processing of tasks and payments, managing claims, and revenue collection.
EMR systems in the Philippines are relatively new but have indeed proven to be effective in improving patient care. The initial investment might be costly yet this kind of system is beneficial in the long run. Remaining in the traditional pen and paper set-up obviously, is not environmentally friendly nor is it cost-efficient. There would be process delays because the healthcare functions are not interconnected with each other. Apart from quicker transactions, EMRs assure more precision and accuracy compared to the traditional way of handling medical and healthcare functions.
Global MD Plus, an emerging EMR system provider in the Philippines, aims to let physicians fully devote themselves to their patient’s wellness. Its system will greatly help enhance workflow processes for medical groups and independent physicians because Global MD Plus believes that enhanced and properly managed workflows can help promote better quality healthcare and remove disorders from healthcare provider’s current workflow.
Deciding to invest or not in an Electronic Medical Records system is a tough decision with heavy implications. We are aware of that. It may come off as hard to learn and challenging in the first run of things and that makes it uncomfortable to decide on the switch. Yet once healthcare providers are aware of the major benefits and advantages of investing in EMRs, money, time and effort will truly be worth it and is a smart move.
EMR systems lead to better patient care and ultimate patient satisfaction. And at the end of the day, all healthcare providers’ priority is their patients’ wellness.