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Can Errors in EHRs Lead to Loss of a Medical License?

Posted on in Medical license defense

indiana professional license defense lawyerTechnological advances have improved processes in multiple professions, including the medical profession. One significant change is how doctors and other medical professionals’ access and update patients’ medical records. No longer are patient histories, vital signs, symptoms, treatments, and other information written to medical records by hand. Instead, the majority of medical providers now use electronic health records (EHR). While this technology is supposed to be more efficient, there are still issues with accuracy and errors, which could result in professional complaints and even more serious ramifications.

What Are Electronic Health Records?

An electronic health record is a digital version of a medical chart that contains all of the information regarding a patient’s health. Some of the information the record contains includes:

  • Patient demographics

  • All of past and present medical issues

  • Vital signs at each appointment

  • Provider notes

  • Prescription medications

  • Allergies

  • Surgeries

  • Laboratory results

  • Radiology reports

  • Pathology results

EHRs also allow a patient access to their records, as well as communicate with their doctor regarding any questions or issues they may be having. These records also allow any providers that the patient is seeing to share medical information about the patient.

Although there are many benefits to using EHRs, these benefits only work if the information entered into them is accurate.

EHR Accuracy

Anyone who uses any type of digital electronics has likely used the method of copying and pasting content instead of manually keying it in. It turns out that the majority of medical providers may be entering much of a patient’s medical information the same way.

And while EHRs are supposed to eliminate the need for a doctor to read through pages of notes in a patient’s medical history, the amount of time they are spending doing data entry into records is taking up almost half their day, leaving only about 25 percent of their workday to actually treat patients. This can lead to doctors looking for ways to shorten the amount of time spent on data entry.

In one study published in JAMA Internal Medicine, researchers found that only 18 percent of the text entered into patient records was entered manually. Just under 50 percent of the text is copied and pasted, and another 35 percent is imported from other sources. According to the study, the more experienced the provider is, the less likely they are to enter the information manually.

One critical problem with copying and pasting is that if that data has errors, the results can lead to possible medical errors, resulting in injury or even death to a patient.

Contact an Indiana Professional License Defense Lawyer

Medical errors can lead to allegations of malpractice and disciplinary action by the Indiana Medical Licensing Board. If you are facing charges of providing patients with substandard care, contact an Indianapolis professional license defense attorney. Call The Law Offices of Joseph J. Bogdan, LLC at 463-219-2612 to schedule a free consultation to find out what steps we can take to defend your license – and your professional future – against these allegations.


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