EHR Best Practices: The Fifth Element

A recent article published in EHR Intelligence by Sara Heath caught my eye for a good common sense approach to introducing an EHR/EMR into health organisations.

4 EHR Best Practices for Improving Clinical Workflows

The four principles espoused are:

  • Develop a workflow plan
  • Utilize the new EHR to improve care coordination
  • Streamline clinical documentation improvement
  • Know when to start an EHR optimization project

The detailed discussion of these principles is well thought out and presented but as a complete description, even at a high level, they are a necessary part of a successful implementation but not sufficient.

Crucially the final principle is elaborated with the statement “Simply because a practice as adopted and implemented an EHR does not mean the hospital will automatically function more effectively. Understanding how to improve is key” which of itself is true. However, the presentation of a dynamic approach to adapting the EHR requires a technology that enables those changes. The large vendor technologies in place in many organisations today do not provide dynamic adaptation as they are not based on an architectural principle of Immediate Adaptability.

So the 4 best practices should have a 5th element: Choose your technology carefully.

  • If your needs are unambiguously defined, then choose a technology that exactly fits your requirements.
  • If you have a dynamic workplace where staff are always trying to improve their work processes then the EHR needs to be able to move easily with them – that is only provided with a technology that has Immediate Adaptability.

The original article is at: