There are a range of benefits to electronic health record systems (EHR) systems in healthcare, but choosing the right EHR software can be a challenge due to the impacts on regulatory compliance and patient care, amongst other factors. There’s also the matter of choosing between electronic health records (EHR) and electronic medical records (EMR) software platforms.
Picking Between Electronic Health Records (EHR) vs Electronic Medical Records (EMR) Software Platforms
Healthcare providers must choose between electronic health records (EHR) software and electronic medical records (EMR) software platforms. The key difference is interoperability. EHR software is accessible by (EHR) multiple healthcare (EHR) providers, whereas electronic medical software is accessible by a single healthcare provider.
EHR software contains more information and it allows a physician to share patient information with healthcare specialists, pharmacies, emergency rooms, urgent care practices, labs and imaging centers, such as a radiology (x-ray) practice. EHR software platforms provide a more complete medical history, allowing for better patient care.
Both EHR and EMR software systems have the following information:
- Patient demographics;
- Medication and treatment info;
- Immunization records;
- Bloodwork and lab results;
- Radiology (x-ray) reports;
- Office visit reports;
- Billing information; and
- Patient insurance information.
Both EMR and EHR platforms are required to comply with HIPAA regulations. Fines for a HIPAA violation can be significant, making it important to use a software system that promotes full HIPAA compliance.
Since EHR software allows multiple practices to input information into the system, it allows for patient tracking over time. This includes vitals tracking and tracking of a patient’s office visits.
According to data from a 2012 survey, 83 percent of logistics software platforms had at least one regulatory compliance issue and 91 percent of EMR and EHR users paid fines for non-compliance. This underscores the importance of working with a software development company that has experience developing platforms that will ensure HIPAA compliance and compliance with other regulatory requirements.
Considerations When Choosing Electronic Health Records (EHR) or Electronic Medical Records (EMR) Software Platform Developers
There are a number of considerations when selecting a development company for the creation of an EHR or EMR software platform. Here’s a look at a few of those considerations.
Cost of an EHR or EMR Platform – Cost is always a key topic of consideration. In addition to the upfront development costs, there’s also the matter of ongoing maintenance and updates. You’ll need to allocate funds for these long term maintenance costs as well as the short term one-time costs.
Templates and Files – Ideally, your new EHR or EMR platform should include important templates and files, such as logos and banners. This ensures consistency across all documents, emails, forms and workflows.
Workflows and Process Automations – The development process for EMR or EHR software ought to include the creation of new workflows or the optimization of existing workflows. This is a great opportunity to develop new process automations which, in turn, frees users to focus on higher-level tasks that cannot be automated.
Machine Learning-Powered Artificial Intelligence AI – Machine learning — also known as ML — is a technology that can be used to identify trends and patterns that may otherwise elude human analysis. Machine learning-powered artificial intelligence offers many opportunities as your chosen software development company creates your EMR and EHR software platform(s).
API Integrations – A well-developed EHR platform will allow for integrations with third-party platforms. There’s no need to reinvent the wheel and third-party API integrations allow you to achieve this. From data feeds in your EHR or EMR platform, to analytics panels, medical charting, ePrescriptions, patient scheduling and patient billing, there are many opportunities to leverage API integrations in an EHR or EMR platform.
Interoperability With Local Health Systems – An EHR software platform should allow for interoperability with the patient’s local health network, thereby allowing medical practices to share critical patient data.
Data Handling and Encryption – HIPAA compliance requires healthcare providers to ensure data privacy and data integrity with data retention and access controls, data encryption and audit trails, amongst other data handling measures. Privacy policies should also detail patient data security measures.
Superuser and User Training – Comprehensive user training is essential for a successful implementation and deployment of a new enterprise software platform. Without proper training, users may continue to use unsupported technology that stands in the way of universal user adoption of a new enterprise software platform. Ideally, you’ll want to select an EHR or EMR development company that can provide on-site training for users and superusers alike.
7T’s Expertise in Developing Software That Meets Regulatory Compliance Requirements
At 7T, we have over a decade of proven experience and deep domain expertise. Choosing the right EMR or EHR software development partner is crucial for the success of your project. You’ll also want to consider factors such as scalability and national interoperability, with the latter being only available for EHRs.
At 7T, we specialize in Digital Transformation development for the healthcare industry and beyond. The Digital Transformation development team here at 7T is guided by the approach of “Digital Transformation Driven by Business Strategy.” As such, the 7T development team works with company leaders who are seeking to solve problems and drive ROI through Digital Transformation and innovative business solutions such as multimodal machine learning-powered AI implementations in the medical business space. 7T has offices in Dallas, Houston, and Austin, but our clientele spans the globe. If you’re ready to learn more about Digital Transformation development solutions, contact 7T today.