The Internet in Modern Medicine: Electronic Medical Records

By | June 1, 2012

Paper records are available to only one person at one location. Electronic medical records have the potential to be used by multiple people in many different locations simultaneously.

One area of the Internet that doctors appreciate, but whose importance is often overlooked by the general public is the availability of Electronic Medical Records (EMR). As opposed to a physical chart that can exist only once in one particular place, electronic medical records have the potential to be available in many locations to many people. There are two main ways of accomplishing this. The first involves web-hosted services where your charts are housed on remote servers that are owned by the software company and are accessed via a secure Internet connection. This is how we at Schlesinger Pain Centers handled our records for the first two years of operation. The second way of doing this is to host the charts on a local server owned by the physician, which can be accessed remotely over the Internet by means of a virtual private network (VPN) or similar secure connection. At Schlesinger Pain Centers we use this second method now for speed and increased control. One big advantage of either approach is that if I get a call in the middle of the night about one of my patients or if I am doing a consult on a patient in the hospital, I no longer have to rely on my memory about the site of a previous injection or some drug dosages. All I need is a computer and an Internet connection and I know for sure.  In addition they require less labor to maintain them and they don’t get lost.

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