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Hospitals Criticize Unrealistic Electronic Medical Record Goals


Image: MC4 Army under CC 3.0

Electronic medical records have been largely looked upon as a panacea: they have the potential to reduce costly and harmful errors, as well as lowering administrative expenses–savings that can then be passed on through lower health insurance rates.

To this end, funding for incentives was included in Obama’s stimulus package last year. Unfortunately, doctors, health insurance plan providers, and hospitals are complaining that the goals are far too unrealistic for the short term. Even facilities that have been praised for their implementation would not qualify on enough of the nearly 30 guidelines to receive funding.

President Obama has called for all medical records to be computerized within five years. Insurers like Kaiser Permanente doubt that will happen on schedule.

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