E-record keeping is supposed to be the bee’s knees? But is it?
“Are patients really safe when e-records are used?” asks Charlie Donahue, a Keene medical malpractice lawyer with offices in Keene, New Hampshire. “They may or may not be, but a recent study indicates the jury is still out on that count.”
The latest study, released by the Institute of Medicine (IOM), takes a close look at how safe patients are when e-records are used, and what types of medical malpractice risks there may be in doctor’s using them. The report does indicate that the implementation of technology has improved patient safety when it comes to dispensing medications. Other than that, it appears to be ambivalent.
Evidently, the report also indicates that poorly-designed technology systems used in a medical environment introduces new risks, such as an increase in dosing, the result of a typo, treatment delays due to improper scheduling or duplicate scheduling and a failure to detect an illness. In other words, the same kinds of errors that may be made using pen and paper to document care on a patient’s chart, which means the risks themselves are not new, but the way mistakes are made is changing.
“The bottom line here is that no matter how a mistake is made, whether electronically or manually, hospitals and clinics are mandated to keep accurate records of patient treatment. It’s not too far-fetched to suggest that a person’s life may depend on that, because it does. Fact is, substandard medical record keeping is the bane of a doctor’s practice, and considered to be an all too common form of medical malpractice,” Donahue added.
Where mistakes are made due to medical negligence, medical malpractice lawsuits could, and should follow, with the experienced assistance of a Keene medical malpractice lawyer.
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