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Lawsuits Will Eventually Drive EHR Adoption?

Posted on August 2, 2012 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of and John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

In the recent #HITsm chat, tireless patient advocate Sherry Reynolds offered this intriguing tweet:

The first question I’d ask based on this tweet is when will EHR become the “standard of care.” I’m sure that some could argue that now based on the $36 billion in EHR incentive money that the government is spending. However, even the most optimistic EHR adoption numbers are at 50% and I’d put it closer to 30% with ambulatory EHR dragging that number down. With that said, what would it take to have EHR as the standard of care that a doctor provider? I’m not a lawyer, but I know a number of healthcare lawyers read this blog. I hope that some of them will chime in with their thoughts.

Sherry’s last comment about not having the lab results points more towards the exchange of healthcare data being the real issue a doctor could face. Not only would this be a potential lawsuit issue for doctors, but at some point enough patients will ask this question as well. I’m sure most doctors aren’t worried since we’re pretty far from that tipping point.

I do think that doctors are quite attune to liability and can be a very big motivating factor for them. I think the same will happen with insecure text messaging in healthcare. The first couple lawsuits against a doctor for sending PHI over text and we’ll see widespread adoption of secure text platforms.

While I can see some of the realities that Sherry tweeted about, a part of me really hates to think that fear of lawsuits would end up being the driving force behind EHR adoption.

Care4Today Reminds Patients to Take Medications, Fill Prescriptions, and To Take Control of Health Care Situation

Posted on I Written By

Katie Clark is originally from Colorado and currently lives in Utah with her husband and son. She writes primarily for Smart Phone Health Care, but contributes to several Health Care Scene blogs, including EMR Thoughts, EMR and EHR, and EMR and HIPAA. She enjoys learning about Health IT and mHealth, and finding ways to improve her own health along the way.

An app designed to help patients remember important medical events was recently released for the iPhone. Care4Today, created by Janssen Research & Development, lets its users set up alerts to fill medications, doctor’s appointments, and reminders to take medication. In addition, it allows for easy storage of contact information and passwords.

This app is secure, so users can rest at peace, knowing that their information won’t be accessed by unauthorized people.

One feature I liked was the medication log. It keeps track of when you last took a medication. While it does take a little bit of effort to input that information, it would be helpful for those willing to do that. I know that I’ve forgotten many times when, and even if, I took some a medication or vitamin, and I ended up skipping it because I didn’t want to overdose. For the forgetful type, this is the perfect feature.

Dr. Diego Miralles, head of Janssen Healthcare Innovation, talked about why Care4Today was created:

The Care4Today Mobile Adherence platform can help overcome the number one barrier to consumers taking their medications by providing customized reminders delivered via secure messagiing directly to their cell phone, a device that most people carry with them at all times.

This doesn’t seem to be a new idea — setting up reminders for important events. Whenever I set up an appointment for the doctor, I immediately enter it into my calendar that is on the home page of my phone. I’m not sure if it would prove to be more efficient just to keep doing that, or to actual enter that information into this app. Maybe I’m not understanding the app correctly, but I think I’ll stick with my calendar for keeping track of appointments.

Overall, I think this app would be most helpful for reminders on refilling medications and to take medications. It would be cool if a feature could be added, that, after you receive an alert for a refill, you could select for a message to be sent to your pharmacy of choice with a request to have the medication prepared for you to pick up at a certain time. Not sure how feasible that would be, but it sure would be easier than calling, or just showing up at the pharmacy and hoping there wasn’t a wait (who am I kidding — there is always a wait!)

This app is free though and available for Android and the iPhone.