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Electronic Health Records: Delivering the Right Information to the Right Health Care Providers at the Right Time

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Abstract

In 1993 I wrote "Communication and information management consume as much as 40 percent of all inpatient costs, yet errors still occur at an unacceptable rate. The Institute of medicine has suggested that electronic medical records (EMRs) will help lower health care costs, maintain quality of care, and provide physicians with better information" (Tierney et al. 1993, 379). Nearly 20 years later I'm here to tell you how far we've come toward implementing EHRs nationwide, and what we've learned from our experience at the Regenstrief Institute in Indiana University. Most of us consider health care to be a service business, because we think in terms of a patient who goes to the doctor to get some thing: advice, medication, devices, surgery, or physical therapy. I'm going to argue that what patients really get, and health care practitioners really provide, is information. Ninety-eight percent of what we who practice medicine do is not the end result, the end service, but the overall process of getting there.

Suggested Citation

  • William M. Tierney, 2011. "Electronic Health Records: Delivering the Right Information to the Right Health Care Providers at the Right Time," Center for Policy Research Policy Briefs 44, Center for Policy Research, Maxwell School, Syracuse University.
  • Handle: RePEc:max:cprpbr:44
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    File URL: https://www.maxwell.syr.edu/uploadedFiles/cpr/publications/cpr_policy_briefs/pb44.pdf
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    Keywords

    electronic medical records; EMRs; EHRs;

    JEL classification:

    • H51 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Health
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior

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