Articles  |   May 2015
Electronic Health Records: Understanding the Implications for Anesthesia Practice
Article Information
Technology / Equipment / Monitoring / Articles
Articles   |   May 2015
Electronic Health Records: Understanding the Implications for Anesthesia Practice
ASA Monitor 05 2015, Vol.79, 36-39.
ASA Monitor 05 2015, Vol.79, 36-39.
Electronic health records (EHRs) have become the norm for hospital systems and anesthesia practices. In 2014, about 70 percent of hospitals in the U.S. had some form of electronic medical record and 45 percent of anesthesia practices utilized electronic anesthesia records, otherwise known as anesthesia information management systems (AIMS). Most of the transition to electronic systems for anesthesia practices has occurred in larger health systems, where as many as 60-70 percent of practices have adopted AIMS. At the same time, many groups have implemented AIMS within their practice whether or not the health system has adopted a more comprehensive EHR. While the transition to electronic records has been incremental, it is clear the trend will continue and that physician anesthesiologists need to transition to electronic documentation systems in order to address the many challenges facing health systems. Not only are there economic and other implications related to the Affordable Care Act and “meaningful use” that require implementation of electronic records, but the complexity of clinical care and need to more effectively coordinate perioperative care mandate more robust integration of documentation systems to optimize care. Robust electronic records are an essential requirement if anesthesiologists are going to be in a position to report on quality measures and clinical outcomes to support value-based payment strategies.
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