Evolution of Health Care Systems Paper
Evolution of Health Care Systems Paper
Evaluation of the health care industry prior to introduction of information technology offers a significant insight on the changes that has occurred in this field. Assimilation of technology in various operations undertaken by health care practitioners such as nurses and physicians has called for a long process. In this case, these changes can be identified by assessing the situation as it was twenty years ago in terms of data handling and analysis in health care institutions. It is evident that evolution of health care systems over the years has promoted increased in effectiveness of delivering health services. This paper will focus on exploring the evolution of health care systems by comparing a current working environment in a health institution to the condition twenty years ago. It will also seek to identify two major events and technological advantages that led to current HCIS practices. Therefore, the paper will also discuss the evolution of health care systems, thereby proving examples of changes related to factors such as external event, error, or omission in scope of the product, value added change and risk response.
Twenty years ago, the patient’s information was recorded and stored using papers and filed, which were locked in a cabinet. This led to increased difficulties in retrieving patient health records. Two events have taken place since 1980s leading to significant changes in health care industry. One of them is a call that was made by former president George W. Bush in 2004, whereby he urged health practitioners to support implementation of Electronic Health Records. The other event that contributed to evolution of health care system involves the formulation of new legislations by Joint Commission for the Accreditation of Health Care Organizations (JCAHO) and Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). However, over the years, the health care system developed leading to establishment of conversion projects aimed at facilitating assimilation of Electronic medical record (EMR). This project focuses on providing computerized way that facilitates the accessibility of various records about the patients’ treatment. This conversion has also enabled storing of data electronically that is considered analogous to the traditional storage of information using paper files. Evolution of health care systems, which is attributed to this conversion, is aimed at increasing the efficiency of medical services and communication among the service providers, for the plan of healthcare management.
It is evident that twenty years ago, health care institutions incurred extra costs in management of patient’s health records. In these case, expenses incurred in management of these records included hiring more personnel to facilitate recording, storing and retrieving information. Moreover, the health care institutions incurred expenses through purchases of papers and files to record information for every new patient, who visited the hospital. These organizations had to create and maintain storage space of the cabinets and lockers where these files were stored. Nonetheless, after introduction of Electronic Health Records (EMR), organization no longer store information using papers. Instead, information is recorded by keying it into a system, which in-turn stores the information in databases that are secure and less expensive to maintain compared to paper files. Moreover, this has increased the effectiveness in the process retrieving patient’s records.
Before introduction of technology in the healthcare industry, there were increased numbers of errors in processes such as billing, and coding important patient’s claims. These errors have been eliminated by template-based documentation, which has been developed through integration technology in the process of capturing information from the patients (Goldstein & Groen, 2007). Adoption of technology in the health care field has involved redesigning of workflow, thereby facilitating productivity through usage of EMR by members of staff in their routine operations. Moreover, this effectiveness leads to elimination of durations of time consumed in accessing patients’ records from different department in the health care institution. Technology in health care institutions can also be attributed to installation of remote access, which exceeds the office and it eliminates physical retrieval of paper chart. Prior to introduction of EMR, the same patients’ records could not be accessed concurrently from different locations. Therefore, this was made possible by establishment of electronic health records, which has significantly increased performance among staff members.
Evolution of the health care system has led to establishment of a need to increase the level of compliance towards standards set by regulatory agencies in the health care industry (American Nurses Association, 2001). This evolution has led to increasing need for the institution to seek a mandate permission from the federal government in order to ensure that sharing of information, through the EMR among the health care providers has met the standards. However, the other external permission has been sought from patients concerning sharing of their information, and in this way, the standards will be met effectively. Moreover, implementers of the system have been ensuring that security measures are taken to reduce chances of compromises process of data transfer through the network involved.
Evolution of health care information system can be greatly attributed to elimination of errors and omissions during the process of undertaking various operations by staff as they offer health care services to patients, thereby increasing the quality of services offered to patients. Integration of information system with information technology has significantly reduced problems that result from errors and omission of information. Moreover, this can be attributed to injunction of EMR with application such as intelligent e prescribing, and improvement of patients’ safety, since this eliminates need to interpret handwriting. Years ago, prescribed medicine was checked against the list of medication, and this led to increased chances of omission. Moreover, there were chances of interaction that considered inappropriate before the prescriptions reaching pharmacy department.
Evolution of health care systems has also improved the quality of services delivered in physicians’ offices through critical implementation of the relevant medical practices with integration of information technology. Moreover, unlike before, the physicians are able to build protocols that are evidence based in relation to medical records from the patients and other department. This evolution has also facilitated retrieval of data for assessing performance of the practices related to patients’ health care services delivery. Furthermore, current health care systems have led to improved practices such as cost control through use of effective systems in the offices. In addition, there are cost saving information technology that creates other businesses of technology as a manual work (Wang & Middleton, 2003). Increased technological advancement in the health care field has also focused on value addition through change of response towards risk. Precisely, this involves the risk that results from the delays in the administration and omission of medication. Therefore, this leads to prevention of loss incurred due inadequate measures to reduce the risk subjected to patients.
American Nurses Association. (2001). Scope and Standards of Nursing Informatics Practice. Washington, DC: American Nurses Publishing
Goldstein, D., & Groen, P. (2007). Medical Informatics 20/20: Quality And Electronic Health Records Through Collaboration, Open Solutions, And Innovation. New York: Jones & Bartlett Publishers. Print
Wang, S. J., & Middleton, B. (2003). A Cost-Benefit Analysis of Electronic Medical Records in Primary Care. American Journal of Medicine, April 1, 114: 397-403