. Clearly explain your position for or against making all patient health information available by electronic means


Patient Health Information and Electronic Data

Improving quality, safety and efficacy of patient care is significant for patients and health care organizations.  The accessibility of patient information is important in order for quality, safety and efficacy to improve.  Electronic health and medical records and patient health records were established in order to accomplish the task.  Each of them provides information to different stakeholders.


The electronic health record (EHR) is an electronic record of “health-related information on an individual that can be created, managed, and consulted by authorized clinicians and staff across more than one health care organization” (Hebda, 2013). The EHR contains information from all clinicians involved in the patients care and they share information with other health care providers (HealthIT, 2013).  The electronic medical record (EMR) is part of the EHR that can be accessed by authorized clinicians and staff in one organization.  The EMR contains notes and information collected by clinicians in an office, clinic or hospital. The patient health record (PHR) is an electronic record of a patient’s health information that can be taken from multiple sources and managed by the individual (HealthIT, 2013).  The PHR contains information such as, medications, immunizations, medical history, allergies, lab results and physician notes.

Benefits of the EHR for physicians

There are several benefits of the EHR for physicians and it helps them improve patient care.  Some benefits include improved patient care, improved care coordination, increase patient participation, improved diagnostics and patient outcomes, and cost savings for patients and providers (HealthIT, 2015).  Physicians report benefits such as, e-prescribing and mobile applications but also report worsened patient care related to inefficiencies (McBride, 2014).  The EHR should provide more seamless flow of information and care for patients and providers.

Patient Health Information

Patient health information should all be electronic.  Some organizations are still working with paper and electronic charting.  It is difficult for staff to document on paper and in the computer, some of it being duplicate charting.  Papers also have to be scanned into the electronic system for future reference, if needed.  Loose papers can get lost or shredded by accident.  It is important to ensure all of the patients health record makes it into the system.  This can happen if more organizations would switch to100% paperless charting.