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Electronic Medical Records Ethical Considerations Essay

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Administrative Ethics Paper
Wendy Siapco
Health Care Ethics and Social Responsibility– HCS/335
November 17, 2014
Dr. James Dockins, Facilitator

Administrative Ethics

The Chosen Issue
In response to the Administrative Ethics assignment, I’ve chosen the topic of Electronic Medical Records and the way in which EMR systems interact with (both supportively and as a potential impedance) safe patient care including, and perhaps specifically, protection of privacy. The main focus will be an article entitled Electronic Medical Record: A Balancing Act of Patient Safety, Privacy and Health Care Delivery published by The American Journal of the Medical Sciences in the September 2014 issue, written by Sriharsha Gummadi et al; a study supported by Expansion Research Capability (1 R24 HS0196548) to study Comparative Effectiveness in Complex Patients.

Who Is Affected?
The health care industry is the second largest segment of the free market economy of the United States. Effectively, all people are impacted by changes in the health care industry at some point in their lives. Electronic Medical Records, within integrated health information technology systems (HIT), is one of the most encompassing and ambitious changes of recent years, with $35 billion appropriated in government incentives (Gummadi, 2014) along with much additional funding spend by individual private institutions.

EMR’s Backstory
The goals of digital electronic medical records are both ambitious and admirable, though clarification should be made between EMR (as used in clinics and include scanned paper-based records) and EHR (which are complete, electronically-searchable and may function as a resource for a particular patient’s health history to accompany them across the continuum of care and provide complete medical information through their entire life). This distinction is brought to us by the Office of National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, updated 2013. Electronic Health Records have many potential benefits including overall improvement in health care quality, accuracy of diagnoses and treatments, timeliness of care, improved oppo...

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