Only 1.8% of Hospitals Are Paperless With a Full EMR

Less than two percent of hospitals in the United States are paperless, meaning they have a complete electronic medical record, according to data from HIMSS' Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model.

The EMRAM is an eight-step process that allows hospitals to track their progress toward meaningful use of certified EMR technology.

Stage 7 under the EMRAM means a hospital has a complete EMR, the ability to share data, data warehousing and data continuity with its emergency department, ambulatory and outpatient settings. However, only 1.8 percent of hospitals had reached this stage in the third quarter of 2012. Just over 7 percent of hospitals fall in stage 6 under the EMRAM model, meaning they have physician documentation, a full clinical decision support system with variance and compliance and a full radiology picture archiving and communication system. Despite these low levels, the number of hospitals that reached stage 5 or stage 6 increased by more than 80 percent in 2011, and the amount of hospitals achieving stage 7 increased by 63 percent.

The majority of hospitals — 41.3 percent— fall in stage 3. Stage 3 means the hospital's EMR has nursing/clinical documentation (flow sheets), a clinical decision support system with error checking and a picture archiving and communication system outside of radiology.

In 2015, hospitals and other eligible providers will have to demonstrate meaningful use of certified EMR technology to avoid penalties by Medicare.

More Articles on Electronic Medical Record Adoption, Optimization:

80% More Hospitals Reaching HIMSS Stage 5 or 6 With Electronic Health Records
5 Solutions to Problems Resulting From Improper HIT Implementation
Physicians Need Technical Assistance to Improve Patient Care With EHRs

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