Electronic Health Records – Benefits and Risks

Electronic health records have formed an important part and bridge in connecting the various health professions to work together. Inter-professional competencies are usually merged with the health information technology (HIT) to make the use of electronic health records relevant in the different healthcare professions. Electronic health records (EHR) have proven to be very effective in the nursing professional and general the health care field. One significant benefit of an EHR is that the information regarding the patient is clear, concise, and thus precise in comparison to that written by health practitioners, which sometimes is undecipherable.  Computers bring about clearly typed information that is quickly readable by both healthcare professionals and the patients (Harper, 2013).


The security and privacy of data is enhanced especially by control, and access of is to the providers and patients. The information on the care of the patient can easily be read and therefore understood by the nursing professionals. Electronic health records improve on the use of standardized terminologies in the EHR to ensure that they bring about meaning that is relevant to health care professionals. The use of such terminologies increases understanding among the healthcare provider in following up on a patient using EHR (McGonigle, D. & Mastrian, 2015).


One risk associated the EHR is the unauthorized access to the information of a patient. The access can lead to financial loss of the individual patient.  An example is of an Electronic Records (ER) employee in a certain hospital who was charged with the wrongful disclosure and conspiracy in divulging information to a chiropractor for a fee. 12000 individual EHRs were disclosed to an unauthorized person for malicious use. Such a risk should be eliminated or lessened primarily and security measure put in place to prevent unauthorized access (Mantalvo, 2013). Such a risk can be dealt with by implementing various measures like the restriction of password sharing and limit login to specific computers (Simpson, 2015). Furthermore, corrective actions against the culprits should be taken and law enforcement agencies involved preventing and alleviating EHR wrongful disclosure in future (Fernández-Alemán, 2013).








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