Healthcare IT: The Next Level

By Bill McQuaid  |  Posted 2010-04-08

Despite government mandates pushing for electronic medical record (EMR) implementation, less than 1 percent of all hospitals in the United States have reached Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) Analytics Stage 6 EMR Adoption Status. Stage 6 requires health care facilities to have made significant executive commitments to and investments in their health care IT progress and to be almost completely automated, which means using paperless medical records.

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As organizations look to implement EMRs, they must carefully evaluate their security systems and processes to protect the safety and confidentiality of patient data. When health care information is transmitted electronically, it can open the door to security vulnerabilities.

Given these stipulations, health care facilities must re-evaluate their IT investments. With the strongest emphasis on ensuring the protection and safety of patient data, these organizations need to invest in technologies that provide adequate security and address clinician productivity and shrinking IT budgets.