Saturday, September 19, 2009

A med student's gripe about electronic medical records.

Overall, I think electronic medical records (EMR) are the way to go for health care. From a med student's perspective however, they can be very frustrating and actually impede my learning. The thing is, EMR can only work if everyone who's caring for the patient has access to a computer. Right now the resident and I share a computer, and the fact of the matter, we only have access to this computer because one of the doctor's is on maternity leave. A large part of receiving adequate medical care is continuity. When I don't have have access to a computer, the only information I know about a patient is a one sentence chief complaint. Hence, I waste time and fee like an idiot getting the background that they've already given.

This isn't my only experience with EMR. It's a problem at a lot of the hospitals as well. So, when everyone makes the switch to EMR, please, please, please have enough computers for the med students as well!


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