Good teardown of recent WSJ op ed on eHealth and IT by Stephen Soumerai of Harvard and Ross Koppel of the University of Pennsylvania, citing a Canadian meta-study by McMaster University, providing examples of electronic medical records (EMRs) in practice and future developments. Quote:
The question (why EMRs) is so ridiculous as to barely require an answer. We are pushing ahead to digitalize because the healthcare industry, which is 18% of our GDP, is the last major industry to go electronic. Despite how critical medicine is to our citizen and nation’s vitality, health care is most often documented with paper and ink. Can you imagine any other industry where this would be acceptable? Would you go to a bank where they use a hand-written ledger? Travel on an airplane without GPS, fly by wire technology or a minimum of three computers? Do you yearn for rotary phones? Credit cards left paper money behind decades ago and will soon move on to the next phase, pay by smart-phone. The world is digital and one of the core problems with medical care is its failure to follow.