Electronic Medical Records

We are not getting any younger; in fact, we are getting older. Today most men live to be close to 80 and women live to be more than 80. People are surviving into advanced old age mainly because of advancements in medical treatment and prevention efforts. We are actually getting better at prolonging life. However, aging causes body and health changes; health changes result in more visits to doctors (primary care and specialists); more visits to the doctor require a sophisticated system to manage all aspects of care.

Community Care Physicians was the first multispecialty medical group in the area to implement a fully integrated Electronic Health Record (EHR) system company wide. Having this system in our offices is a benefit to our patients, as well as our physicians.

The EHR is more than an electronic version of a paper chart. It assists physicians in collecting, evaluating and documenting information regarding your medical care via a computer. The EHR has many benefits compared to the traditional system of paper charts. It is easier for physicians to access the medical records both from within the office and outside the office. EHR accurately retains and retrieves information that might otherwise be lost or forgotten in a paper chart. Physicians can transmit clinical information easily and efficiently to consultants and specialists who collaborate in care. In other words, EHR provides physicians and patients with the information that they need, when and where they need it, so that they can optimize a plan of care. One example is the EHR function called "Health Management Plan" (HMP).

The Health Management Plan helps physicians and patients to monitor and respond to recommended procedures for health maintenance and disease management. Alerts are created when an HMP item is due or overdue, alerting clinicians to clinically significant events. Such an item, for example, might include a heart/vascular screening, a bone density test or a lipid profile. Important elements of the care plan are neither forgotten nor overlooked.

The EHR also offers an e-prescribing tool that allows physicians to prescribe medications and fax them directly to the pharmacy of choice via a computer, so that the prescription is ready when you get there. This electronic system helps eliminate the risk of misinterpretation that may result with illegible handwriting. It also features drug interaction and allergy checking to alert clinicians if a medication they are prescribing could cause a problem. The entire process is faster than using a script pad and reduces the need for pharmacy call back, saving time for physicians and their patients.