Boston Globe attacks, Dr. Karen DeSalvo defends EHRs

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National Coordinator Karen DeSalvo, MD, jumped to the defense of electronic health records after a Boston Globe article highlighted their role in patient safety events.

The Globe article argued the pace of EHR adoption has been too quick for regulators to keep abreast of patient safety issues. Spurred by meaningful use incentive payments, physicians and hospitals have implemented "complex, balky, unwieldy and error-prone computer systems" that are becoming a growing cause of patient safety issues. The risks are compounded by a lack of mandated reporting of EHR-related complications or deaths, according to the article.

This week, the newspaper published Dr. DeSalvo's response to the article, which chastised the article's omission of any examples of how EHRs can improve patient care. She also mentioned the ONC's plan for a health IT safety center, which while not mandating the reporting of patient safety issues, would aid in their voluntary collection.

More Articles on EHRs:

Stakeholders continue to blast C-CDA architecture
Study: Patients more likely to lie when physicians use EHRs
Study: Physician communication increases following EHR implementation

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