September 12, 2013
The adoption of electronic health records (EHR) by physicians and hospitals is not only benefiting the patient, but the healthcare provider, too, according to new data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).
About 80% of eligible hospitals and more than 50% of eligible professionals who use EHRs have received incentive payments from Medicare or Medicaid, CMS reported recently in a news release. The payments are made possible through Medicare and Medicaid EHR incentive programs.
By using EHRs, patients have more access to their health records and the records can be easily and securely shared between healthcare providers.
"More patients than ever before are seeing the benefits of their providers using electronic health records to help better coordinate and manage their care," Farzad Mostashari, M.D., national coordinator for health information technology, said in the release. "These data show that health care professionals are not only adopting electronic health records rapidly, they're also using them to improve care."
Since the EHR incentive programs began in 2011:
- More than 190 million electronic prescriptions have been sent by doctors, physician assistants and other healthcare providers using EHRs, reducing the chances of medication errors.
- More than 13 million reminders about appointments, required tests or check-ups were sent to patients using EHRs.
- Healthcare professionals sent 4.6 million patients an electronic copy of their health information from their EHRs.
- Providers have checked drug and medication y interactions to ensure patient safety more than 40 million times through the use of EHRs.
- Providers shared more than 4.3 million care summaries y with other providers when patients moved between care settings, resulting in better outcomes for their patients.
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