EHR's - No Longer a Game of Hide and Seek
Ahhh! What a great day to be a physical therapist. Grab that second cup of coffee as you wander over to your desk only to be greeted by a giant stack of manila folders. This stack of folders contains everything you need to know about your day ahead. Each folder is labeled with a name - a very important name - your next patient. All is well............well, maybe not everything? Two charts are missing - and that's when the fun begins!
Mrs. Bo Peep and Mr. Wey Offcourse are nowhere to be found. Your next step is the clerk in Medical Records. The news is not good. Your missing charts are being held hostage on someone else's desk who saw them two days ago. The charts were not returned per the "official law of the land." Medical records had made the request - twice, but with no success. Medical records will try again, you have two hours until Mrs. Peep's appointment.
Time goes by, Mrs. Peep's all-important medical record is still AWOL. Time to jump into action. Race up three flights of stairs, dash down the hall to a busy waiting room. Work your way to the reception desk and explain your dilemma. The medical chart must still be here. Alas, Mrs. Peep's medical record is still sitting on her physican's desk - waiting for me. All's well with the world again - Mrs. Peep's medical record has been in good hands, just not mine. Now to find Mr. Wey Offcourse's elusive chart - then my day will be perfect.
Every physical therapist, occupational therapist, and health care provider can relate to this tale of events. For years patient charts have been stored in manila folders filled with pen and paper documents. There was only one chart for every patient. The problem was sharing that one chart with every provider involved in their care and treatment. EHR's and EMR's are solving that problem for patient and provider alike. Electronic health records allow each provider to have access to a patient's medical history ensuring a view of the "total" person, not just their side of the story.
As a physical therapist, I can honestly say using EMR's has changed my life for the better - and for Mrs. Bo Peep as well.
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