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One of the advantages of using an Electronic Health Record (EHR) is its ability to simplify research activities to the point that even small medical practices can do their own research, either to support quality improvement activities within their practice or purely for research purposes. Determining what type of research you are interested in and…

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Feeling overwhelmed by information? In a highly technology-dependent world, information is the currency of our time. Before we had electronic mechanisms to share and communicate information, physicians were feeling overloaded in their practices. The continuous influx of paper reports, results, requests, and unsolicited publications — in addition to personal reading material — was overwhelming before…

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As Electronic Health Records, patient portals, and mobile access to online healthcare information becomes more prevalent, physicians need to consider whether they need an online identity to promote their practice, retain their patients, and remain competitive in an increasingly online world. Many physicians question whether they should spend their limited time on medical practice websites,…

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The following is text from an email received from CMS regarding the eRx: Quality Reporting Communication Support Page Now Available for Medicare Electronic Prescribing (eRx) Payment Adjustment Hardship Exemption Requests In 2009, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) implemented the Electronic Prescribing (eRx) Incentive Program, which is a program that uses incentive payments…

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Many providers were caught off guard by the e-prescribing penalty that started earlier this year. Unfortunately, there is nothing you can do at this point to stop the penalty on 2012 claims but it is not to late to avoid next year’s penalty. For those who are unfamiliar with the program and what you need to…

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When patients become more actively involved in their own health, there’s a much stronger likelihood their health outcomes will be better. “Questions are the Answer,” is a new public education initiative from the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). The initiative encourages patients to have more effective two-way communication with their doctors and…

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Could you imagine the national road system without standards for width, signage, stop lights, and exits? Similarly, how about the railways without standard gauges for railway tracks? It is these standards that make systems work safely and effectively. Many organizations establish and manage the standards, defining how and when changes are made. In healthcare IT…

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In the past few years, the prevalence of cloud-based applications in healthcare has expanded rapidly. But, what is cloud computing and how does it apply to the medical practice and EHRs? For practical purposes, cloud computing describes a situation in which the software you are using and applicable data is accessed via the Internet instead…

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A controversial study in Health Affairs this month has provoked a series of articles and public exchanges about the potential for health IT to reduce costs while improving quality. Why so much attention to this article? The conclusions of the study call into question whether health IT will result in lower healthcare costs. Here are…

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The New York Times ran an article this week written by Matt Richtel entitled, “As Doctors Use More Devices, Potential for Distraction Grows.” The concern is that due to the proliferation of computers, smart phones, iPads and other easily accessible technology, physicians and other health care professionals are focused less on the patient in front…

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I have been hearing from an increasing number of physicians and practices that they have been turned down by the EHR vendor of their choice or are faced with a long wait time before the vendor can install the system. All of the practices I have heard from were relatively small (under 10 physicians) and…

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