Ask the Lawyer, October 2012: Choosing an EHR

What should I look for when choosing an EHR program for my practice?

Health care providers now have the option of choosing from a variety of Electronic Healthcare Record (EHR) programs. In making the switch from paper to electronic records, keep in mind that choosing the right EHR program will help avoid future legal issues. The key to choosing an EHR program is looking for one that allows you to maintain an accurate and complete medical record. One of the first considerations is whether you wish to qualify to accept Medicaid and/or Medicare payments. If so, you must use an EHR program that meets certain qualifications: (1) meaningful use; and (2) being a certified EHR program. Failure to meet either of those requirements results in loss of funds under these federal programs. A list of certified EHR programs can be found through the Office of National Coordinator of Health Information Technologies. The end result of your search should be a system which maintains a precise and inclusive patient medical record reflective of what would have been included in the patient’s paper record.

(Questions are presented by members of Guilford Medical and Dental Managers.)

For a more indepth look at choosing an electronic medical record program, read this post:

Choosing the Right EMR