Report indicates national electronic medical records system becoming a reality

With more and more hospitals, small medical facilities and private practices switching to electronic medical records, reports now suggest that a national system that allows for effortless information exchange between these parties could soon be a possibility.

According to an October report by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONCHIT), 75 percent of hospitals are looking to invest in services that allow them to better exchange information, such as electronic medical records software. CNNMoney suggests that the reason many of these medical facilities are considering the upgrade is that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 provided big incentives to those in the healthcare industry.

“Our study clearly shows a market that has been increasingly adopting [health information exchange] solutions since 2009,” CapSite’s senior vice president and general manager, Gino Johnson, said in an October press release following the announcement. “We are projecting this market to continue to accelerate over the next 24 months.”

In the next six months, many of the small facilities and doctors that made the transition will receive $22,000 in Medicaid payments. However, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, to get the biggest benefit from the software, these healthcare professionals need to begin making the transition by 2012.

While there are only a few weeks left in the year, those who begin research into the process can still qualify for the next round of incentives. As a result, the individuals who manage these facilities may benefit by speaking with a provider of EMR software that can answer their questions and best prepare them for the service.

This way, these facilities can benefit monetarily now, while laying the foundation for a system backed by top vendors like Medisoft and Lytec that could help revolutionize patient safety in the years to come.