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AJMC: Most Doctors' Offices Can View Labs, Send Prescriptions Online, Thanks to EHR
October 29, 2013

AJMC: Most Doctors' Offices Can View Labs, Send Prescriptions Online, Thanks to EHR

Electronic health records are changing the way your family doctor does business, with most now able to view lab results or send a prescription online, a change that advocates say will improve efficiency and lead to fewer medical errors.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                            OCTOBER 29, 2013

AJMC: Most Doctors’ Offices Can View Labs, Send Prescriptions Online, Thanks to EHR

PLAINSBORO, N.J. – Electronic health records are changing the way your family doctor does  business, with most now able to view lab results or send a prescription online, a change that advocates say will improve efficiency and lead to fewer medical errors.

This change, outlined in a study by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT, was published in the October issue of the American Journal of Managed Care. It is based on data from the 2011 National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey Electronic Medical Record Supplement.

While the share of physicians now able to send electronic prescriptions had moved past the halfway point to 55% by 2011, there was still great variability among doctors on where and how electronic records are used. Larger practices were more likely to use e-prescriptions, for example, but practice size was less of an indicator for transfer of clinical summaries. Practices owned by health maintenance organizations or healthcare corporations were also more likely than independent practices to achieve higher standards of EHR usage.

Researchers, led by Vaishali Patel, PhD, found that great variation exists among vendors and in different parts of the country in exchange capability, especially for electronic exchange of clinical summaries. However, when doctors gain EHR capability, the study found, it increased their electronic capabilities:

  • 87% could view lab results online, compared with 67% of all physicians;
  • 78% could send prescriptions electronically, compared with 55% of all physicians;
  • 73% could incorporate lab results into an EHR, compared with 42% of all physicians;
  • 61% could provide patients with clinical summaries, compared with 38% of all physicians;
  • 54% could send an electronic order to a lab, compared with 35% of all physicians; and
  • 49% could exchange clinical summaries with other providers, compared with 31% of all physicians.


CONTACT:    Nicole Beagin  (609) 716-7777 x. 131

                     nbeagin@ajmc.com 

                     www.ajmc.com     Follow us on @AJMC_Journal

 
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