MedPAC: EHRs alone won’t improve patient care

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EHRs have the potential to help providers in different settings better communicate about patients, but they won’t improve patient care in a vacuum, warns the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) in its latest report to Congress.


“A better information system by itself is unlikely to improve care unless the systems are interoperable, the providers involved establish protocols for how they will communicate key information to each other, and processes are in place to augment the information provided in the electronic medical record so that all pertinent information can be shared across providers,” the report says


MedPAC suggests that process changes to “easily” communicate medical information electronically could include emphasizing team-based care, which would improve coordination, and establishing a beneficiary-owned medical record which the patient would bring to all appointments, and into which the provider would enter pertinent medical information.




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