EMR Use Might Distract Clinicians from Patient Interaction

Wed, May 26, 2010

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Will using EMRs cause physicians to sacrifice personal communication with patients?

While electronic medical records (EMRs) have their downsides – the main one being start-up expenses – a new possible problem is revealed in a recent report released by the Center for Studying Health System Change.

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By Heart: Your Very Own iPhone Cardiac Sensor

Wed, May 26, 2010

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Apple’s latest endeavor could be core to mobile health care of the future.

The iPhone is smart enough to be your home or office computer’s mini-version, so what’s to keep Steve Jobs from becoming your mini-health monitor?

iPhone maker Apple has applied for a patent on an integrated sensor that can monitor a user’s cardiac activity.

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Patients Don’t Trust EHR, Survey Says

Wed, May 26, 2010

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Experts emphasize balance between patient care and privacy.

Personal health data is less secure now than it was a year ago, according to a recent online survey by nCircle, an IT solutions provider.

Almost half of the 257 people who participated in the survey said they are anxious about the fact that multiple partners of their health care providers (i.e., such as EHR vendors and insurers) have access to personal electronic information — increasing the risk of security breaches.

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HHS Online Data Breach List Thrives

Wed, May 19, 2010

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Many reported cases involve electronic systems, but paper records are still a security threat.

Theft, loss, unauthorized access, or hacking. Whatever the breach is, HHS encourages people to turn to their computers and report it online. HHS then reports the specifics of breaches of security that affect 500 or more individuals. Presently,  64 cases are posted online, which allegedly affected about 1.2 million individuals.

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Use an EHR System to Your Billing Advantage

Wed, May 19, 2010

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Upfront costs could give way to savings in many areas, but do your homework first, and focus on balance.

If your medical practice has been considering the switch to an electronic health records (EHR) system, you may have heard how one can improve the efficiency of your billing processes, but you might also be frightened by the significant upfront costs.

So how do you balance the benefits with the expense? Follow these experts’ advice on how EHRs might benefit the key areas of your practice.

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Digital Data to Balloon 44-Fold by 2020

Wed, May 19, 2010

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Cloud computing offers fresh opportunities and challenges for HIT CIOs.

Universal digital information will grow 44-fold in 11 years – from less than one zettabyte in 2009 to 35 zettabytes in 2020. (A zettabyte, by the way, is a million petabytes, and a petabyte is a million gigabytes.) This exponential growth will pose a huge challenge to HIT CIOs and other IT professionals nationwide, according to a new study.

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Software May Mitigate Tough CMS Stance on ICD-10

Wed, May 19, 2010

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CMS backs up information drive for the October 1, 2013 deadline.

A new application designed for the health care sector could make transition from the ICD-9 code system to ICD-10 expanded version much easier, claim IT vendors Ingenix and Health Language, Inc. (HLI).

The new Ingenix Global Code Manager solution translates between the 13,000-item ICD-9 code set and the 68,000-code ICD-10 set — a feature that will help health care organizations shift to the new disease classification system by October 1, 2013.

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Most Hospital CIOs Cite EMR as Top Priority

Wed, May 12, 2010

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But a new survey also indicates their direct reports aren’t downloading the message.

Getting electronic medical records systems off the ground in their hospitals is the most pressing concern for chief information officers, according to a recently reported survey, but that priority is not making its way down the totem pole to the managers and directors in their IT departments.

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Chosen Communities to be ‘HIT’ with $220M in Grants

Wed, May 12, 2010

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Beacon funding program to kick off when 130 applicants are chosen.

Fifteen lucky communities will be awarded a total of about $220 million in grants for health IT infrastructure, national coordinator for health IT David Blumenthal, MD has announced.

The grants will come from the Beacon Community program, which provides funding to communities to build and strengthen their HIT infrastructure and exchange capabilities. The chosen communities will have to “pay it forward” by achieving measurable improvements in health care quality, safety, efficiency, and population health — and then sharing lessons learned.

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For PHI Peace of Mind, Be Kind & Remind

Wed, May 12, 2010

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Crafting log-on banners helps staff safeguard protected info.

Don’t have the time or energy to tie strings around your workforce’s fingers to remind them about the importance of safeguarding the privacy of protected health information (PHI)? Well, here’s a far more practical and effective way to remind your staff to be on guard when it comes to handling PHI.

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