Electronic Health Records

Earlier this month I commented on a Los Angeles hospital’s computer system that was taken over by hackers, and the criminals demanded a ransom payment in bitcoin to release the electronic medical records.   The hospital ended up paying the ransom in 40 bitcoins (approximately $17,000), as demanded by the criminals. In that post I shared some technical advice from the Office of ...

In recent years, the consequences of breach of confidentiality have increased significantly given state and federal laws governing the breach of patient and consumer information. Along with the increased regulation is the incentive for wrongdoers (internal and external to your practice) to access and steal your patients’ information without permission. Protected health inform ...

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. While it is great to recognize and educate everyone on the issue of mental health, I want to take a moment to recognize and thank the psychiatrists and other mental health professionals for all they do under what can be very tough circumstances. My comments are focused on psychiatrists because my team of risk managers has the most interac ...

I’ve been educating physicians on the risks of electronic health records (EHRs) for years, including the risk of harm to patients. Now I note that The Joint Commission on March 31st issued Sentinel Event Alert 54, Safe Use of Health Information Technology, which includes examples of how adverse events may occur through the use of EHRs. Here are just some potential patient sa ...

Posted:

As I am finalizing preparation for PRMS’ national CME seminar on technology in San Francisco on October 18, I saw the headlines about the hospital EHR flaw that is being mentioned in the press as a reason for the Ebola patient’s initial release from the hospital and the resulting public harm threat. From CNBC: “’The hospital Thursday night said when Duncan was first examined S ...

Posted:

We came across data on the rate that psychiatrists are using EHRs (electronic health records). The data was published by Medscape.com for a study of the percentage of various specialists who are making “meaningful use” of EHRs. You can find the survey here (registration required). The pertinent slides are #24, 25, and 26. The key point is that 7% of psychiatrists responding t ...

Posted:

Every physician knows the three steps of experiential education: first you watch over someone’s shoulder, then you get to try it yourself, and finally you demonstrate mastery by teaching the next group of neophytes. This could well be the earliest form of education, since at its most basic, it doesn’t require anything to be written down nor does it even require the teacher and ...

Posted:

A guest blog by Holly Taylor, RN, BSN, JD, Risk Manager Have you heard the term e-iatrogenesis? It was first used in a 2007 article to describe patient harm caused at least in part by the application of health information technology (HIT).[1] HIT includes such things as computer physician order entry, clinical decision support systems, electronic health records (EHRs), etc. Ev ...

Posted:

Converting from paper to electronic health records may clear out some office clutter; however, doing so will not, on its own, improve patient care and safety. Electronic health records (EHRs) and other health information technology come with their own set of safety issues. For example, EHR systems that do not fit well within the workflow of your office or facility are of great ...

Posted:

When we at The Psychiatrists’ Program packed our bags for the American Psychiatric Association’s Annual Meeting in Hawaii, we brought our usual arsenal of convention personnel and materials. Of course we brought our most important assets, the PRMS staffers: our team of expert risk managers, underwriters and claims examiners ready to talk with psychiatrists and answer their ques ...