On September 28, Blue Cross and Blue Shield North America (BCBSNC) announced a collaboration with the healthcare technology provider Allscripts. According to the companies, the joint venture will aim to make electronic medical records software available to more than 750 physicians based in the North Carolina area.
Formally known as the North Carolina Program to Advance Technology for Health (NC PATH), the initiative also aims to provide training and support for doctors and small medical facilities that are looking to integrate EMR software into their operations.
Brad Wilson, the president and CEO of BCBSNC, said that the partnership would help doctors gain the technology to provide better care, a statement that recent research backs up. For example, a study involving diabetes patients found that these individuals receive better care when their physicians are using electronic medical records to monitor their progress.
"Electronic health records are a critical part of a future that provides Americans with more affordable, higher quality care," Glen Tullman, CEO of Allscripts, said in the press release. "Collaborations like this one that expand the reach of technology are a step in the right direction."
In addition, other studies have shown that this type of software can reduce medical errors and redundancy that causes an increased workload for healthcare professionals, the release said.
Doctors who choose to participate in the program may be able to more easily meet the meaningful use requirements needed to attain government benefits under the HITECH Act. Small medical facilities operating outside of North Carolina may want to turn to a private provider for this type of assistance.
For example, a company that provides a seasoned team of professionals that can help with training and installation for top products from Practice Choice or Medisoft may be just what these facilities need to get their transition off the ground.