Electronic Medical Record Initiative
The MCRHC submitted a grant proposal to the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration to assess the needs and current capacity of area providers to access electronic medical records. The project will study ways to build capacity and network infrastructure and the potential to share administrative resources. The project will include a study of the barriers to access, current status of transition to electronic medical records, patient volume, strategies for increased access, available incentives for participation, potential collaborating network partners, participation in the Regional Health Information Organization (RHIO) and cooperative purchasing opportunities.
As a result of this work, the MCRHC will better understand the local needs regarding electronic medical records, identify areas to improve efficiency and reduce redundancy, and potentially support the expansion of provider participation in our rural communities. The MCRHC will be able to provide the area healthcare community with valuable information regarding the benefits of electronic medical records as well as potential opportunities to work cooperatively to achieve cost effectiveness.
The use of electronic medical records has been proven to result in improved quality of health services through the ability to provide comprehensive, coordinated care. Through this project, the region will experience increased access to quality health care services in the following ways:
· Reduced administrative burden (for example, looking up patient information via the CNY RHIO portal takes far less time than contacting other physicians’ offices or labs) will allow small rural providers to be more sustainable.
· Primary care providers will have more access to patient information from specialists located outside their local community which will result in improved and more efficient care.
· Information technology services such as secure messaging for important patient reminders can be possible for small primary care physicians who would otherwise not have the administrative capacity to provide such wellness related services.
· By providing access to cooperative services such as this, our region will be able to retain and/or attract providers including specialists who could not otherwise have sustainable practices with the lower patient volumes typical to rural areas.
· Providers will be aligned with electronic medical records services best suited for their needs. MCRHC will be able to facilitate this.