The first real taste of health information technology (HIT) for providers and hospitals came after the inception of the HITECH Act in 2009. While adoption and utilization started off slow in the years following its enactment, several factors helped accelerate its growth, including federally sponsored incentive payments. These programs helped spur the adoption and meaningful use of HIT by eligible professionals, hospitals, critical access hospitals and Medicare Advantage Organizations. Most notably, this promotion also increased the use of qualified electronic health records (EHRs).
To help hospitals and providers keep up with evolving technology requirements, Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive programs were established. These helped encourage eligible professionals and hospitals to affordably adopt, implement, upgrade and demonstrate meaningful use of certified EHR technology. Today however, some non-profit organizations still have yet to either implement an EHR or upgrade their systems, knowing that the implementation could be disruptive and require time and energy from their limited resources.
If you’re a non-profit organization that has yet to upgrade from paper to electronic health records, consider the top five ways EHRs create value, especially if you select the right EHR vendor.
- Add service lines and meet new business models
A holistic view of your consumers across programs will allow you to identify and address gaps in care coordination and services.
- Decrease spending and human error
Adopting a paperless process will eliminate the cost and inevitable human error associated with paper records. It will also increase availability of information to all staff members.
- Increase staff efficiency
Using one integrated and enterprise-wide system in which information is only entered once will increase staff efficiency and allow for a stronger focus on care.
- Enable better outcomes for your consumers
An EHR lets you easily and securely interface with other provider organizations and clients, helping to improve care experience and outcomes for those you serve.
- Monitor agency progress and make better decisions
Easy access to reports, dashboards and other important information can help facilitate better, data-driven decision-making while keeping staff “in the know.”
Need tips on how to get started with your transition from paper records to an EHR?
Read “The Case for Centralized Healthcare Scheduling and Billing.”