Top 5 reasons to stop using Paper Health Records

Paper is gradually becoming an outdated source of record storage in this new age of technology. By now, you must have even concluded that there are more problems than benefits in continuing to use paper-based records a.k.a Medical Records.

It’s time to switch to electronic medical records! However, a major section of healthcare professionals in India is still continuing to invest in humongous real estate involved in keeping the so-called “medical record rooms” alive. 

So, here is a listicle to make this transition easier for you!

  1. Yearly Expenditure for Maintaining Paper Health Record

One of the major concerns of every Indian healthcare facility is protecting medical documents from rodents. Which obligates medical practitioners to spend lakhs of rupees on maintaining the MRD (Medical Records Department) rooms. In fact, the expensive paper-record maintenance should be enough for medicos to consider switching to healthTech platforms. Also, the real estate cost is not worth spending, when you can optimize the area for revenue generation.

With an electronic medical records system, you can ensure the safety of medical records from rodent attacks. These digital systems not only provide safety against damage but also clear up the occupied MRD rooms to expand your services and revenue sources. 

2. Paper Records are Subject to Tampering

The medical documents in MRD(Medical Records Department) are in imminent danger of being misplaced, copied or even altered to substitute the real information. Sometimes, it is even difficult to figure out the person responsible for tampering and further, it may take days to recollect the documents. 

But, electronic health records are encrypted and generally password-protected to prevent unauthorized distribution or adjustments to the medical documents & patient charts. Upgrading to an electronic record system clearly helps you maintain pristine records with the highest levels of safety. 

3. Paper doesn’t give Real-time Data backup in Disaster

It’s not just about keeping your medical data confidential, but also its availability in adverse conditions. Consider if the MRD or the server room is on fire. Then, how will you retrieve the care facility’s data? It can be a simple mishap or natural disaster; a medical record system must ensure 100% data backup. Paper records certainly do not provide any backup which is also their biggest disadvantage over digital records. 

An electronic medical record system in-built with automatic disaster recovery via real-time data backup will enable zero per cent data loss and 100% business continuity during such disasters.

4. Protection against Data Breaching

Patient data privacy & security breaches have raised some serious concerns regarding the adaptations of healthTech platforms. Do you know, according to a study in 2020, In the past five years, we’ve seen healthcare data breaches grow in both size and frequency, affecting nearly 80 million people worldwide?

There are also some quality healthTech platforms in the market that provide three-layer data security. These security measures include but are not limited to:

  • App-level protocols 
  • Network-level security 
  • Database-level encryptions

This implies that you don’t need just a system! you need the one that follows regulatory requirements under HIPAA and ensures maximum data security. Several healthTech platforms in the market use military-grade SHA512 encryption, encapsulating all medical data which can only be accessed with a secure user ID. 

5. Internal Audit Trails & System Integrity checks

With paper records, how would you know who has exploited the patient’s chart or if they altered it? 

EHR systems not only facilitate enhanced security but also benefit your facility during the audits. An electronic medical record system can assist you to verify people who have accessed patients records/documents along with time of access and their authorization ID. At the time of the audit, an electronic medical record system will be able to shed light and will allow damage control. 

HArbor Says: It’s true that electronic healthcare records may have some addressable limitations but they hold a mile-long advantage over paper records. 

PS: It’s time to reuse your MRD Room for a better purpose.

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