Should Google organize your medical records? Essay
Should Google organize your medical records?
What concepts in the chapter are illustrated in this case? Who are the stakeholders in this case? Concepts illustrated in this case are: responsibility, accountability and liability. Responsibility involves complying with the potential expenses, duties, and obligations for decisions. Google must presume the vastness of responsibility for safeguarding the information and ensuring it is used only for approved purposes only (Parikh, 2009). Accountability which is an element of systems and public institutions: It implies that mechanisms are put to establish who took responsible action.
Yet again, Google must make sure accountability of its systems and persons answerable for creating and maintaining the system (Parikh, 2009). Liability will entail a feature of political systems through which a body of laws are in place and that they permit individuals to recover the damages done to them by other actors, systems or organizations. Federal and state governments must legislate and enforce laws protecting medical records and its uses. Google have to assume liability for the system (Parikh, 2009). The following three dimensions play a major role in the proposed system:
Information rights and obligations, Accountability and control, System quality. Stakeholders in this case include patients and health-care consumers, doctors and other medical professionals, insurance companies, health-care related businesses like pharmaceutical companies, governments, and storage providers like Google, Microsoft and Revolution Health Group (Parikh, 2009). 2. What are the problems with America’s current medical recordkeeping system? How would electronic medical records alleviate these problems?
Present records are paper-based, thus making efficient communications and access difficult. The existing system of recording and keeping medical information makes it hard, almost impossible, to systematically examine and distribute the information. It’s also time consuming and very expensive to sustain paper-based medical records. Google has proposed electronic medical record system which will allow clients to enter their fundamental medical data into an online repository and request doctors to send important information to Google electronically (Health World Net. 2010).
One feature of the system will include a ‘health profile’ for medications, conditions, and allergies, reminder messages for prescription refills or doctor visits, directories for nearby doctors, and personalized health advice. The application will also be capable to recognize information from many different recordkeeping technologies presently in use by hospitals and other institutions. The objective of the system is to make patients’ records easily accessible, particularly in emergencies, and more absolute and to rationalize recordkeeping (Health World Net, 2010).
3. What management, organization, and technology factors are most critical to the creation and development of electronic medical records? Management: Electronic record keeping promises to cut down on costs associated with maintaining health data. Though, the upfront costs of implementation are daunting, in particular to doctors who maintain their own practices. Managers would have to make certain that data was not used for profiling patients or make use of the data to deny medical procedures.
Managers once again would also have to ensure information was not altered or interfered with for purposes other than what is intended (Borboa, 2009). Organization: The new system also promises to make data more organized and easier to retrieve. Organizations must guarantee that data is not used for profiling and not used in the data analysis technology called non obvious relationship awareness. Government, private, and non-profit organizations must enact new laws, similar to the HIPAA law, that provides sufficient protection of consumer health data.
That would help restore confidence patients and make them more likely to use the system (Borboa, 2009). Technology: New systems must be able to net with other versions of medical record-keeping applications. The software must be created around universal standards making implementation easier and more efficient. Above all else, technology must be created to prevent security breaches. Systems must be available one-hundred percent of the time, especially to obtain medical information for emergency patients (Borboa, 2009).
All three factors must work together to prevent privacy invasions and ensure medical data is not misused or abused. 4. What are the pros and cons of electronic patient records? Do you think the concerns over digitizing our medical records are valid? Why or why not?? Just as the way every coin has two sides, electronic patient records has its advantages and disadvantages. Some of the pros of electronic patient records are that it provides more efficient access to a patient’s medical data and also quicker dissemination of medical data, especially in cases of emergencies.
Compared to the manual way of keeping the patients data records, electronic data records lower the costs of gathering, storing, and dissemination of medical data. In addition the use of electronic health records has led to the provision of organization and efficiency in the healthcare industry and this has proved to be of much help (Tolomeo, 2008). In addition, it has helped in the delivery of quality health care to the patients as the records are clear, eligible and easy to understand. This is because it minimizes instances of errors.
In addition, the data is kept safe compared to paper records. Paper records are easily lost either through fires, floods or through other natural calamities. On the other hand, digital medical records can be kept forever. Those supporting the use of electronic health records argue that computer technology, once fully implemented in the health industry, would enhance security rather than threaten it (Tolomeo, 2008). Cons of electronic patient records. The greatest concern involving EPRs is the security and privacy concerns.
These concerns range from how the data will be captured, stored, and used. With some medical data systems, there has been a reported security breach. The Google proposed system of storing medical data is subject to the same threats. People are worried that sensitive information legitimately accessible via electronic health records might lead to their losing health insurance or job opportunities (Tolomeo, 2008). In addition, not many people are comfortable with their medical records being digitized and made available for every one to see.
By use of EMRs, there is loss of the human touch in health care. Because EMR is concerned with ticking of boxes and crossings in electronic forms, there is lack of the human touch and this can lead to misclassification of the patient and their conditions. 5. Should people entrust Google with their electronic medical records? Why or why not? This will depend on how different people view and hold their privacy, how they take or view unauthorized access to their medical data and the costs of entrusting Google with the medical records compared to other ways of storing the same.
Those people who are oblivious and insensible about their privacy are bound to entrust Google with their electronic medical records. On the other hand, there has been a reassurance from Google that its security will be very tight and that people should have confidence in its ability to store and protect the privacy of the data gathered. Even with these reassurances, there are a lot of people who still have their concerns since Google has not revealed much detail about its security procedures and practices.
Their hope is that Google will pick on the right security tools but still they are not assured on what Google will use as its security (Parikh, 2009). 6. If you were in charge of designing an electronic medical recordkeeping system, what are some features you would include? What are features you would avoid? If I were in charge of designing an electronic medical record keeping system, some of the major features that I would include are iron tight security features, a universal method of gathering data accompanied with a universal standard of doing the same, a universal standard method of storing and disseminating data.
In addition, I would include a universal and standardized technology for transmitting the data. I would also include an integrity feature and a feature that ensures easy retrieval of the stored data. Other features include ability to allow migration and a backup system (United States Environmental Protection Agency. 2005). Also the system should have a life cycle management where by it has the ability to manage these records through out its life cycle and also has the ability to distinguish between records and non records and also have the ability to match each record as requested.
Some of the features that I would avoid include features that would allow unrestricted access to data, and transmissions that are not unencrypted. List of Reference: Borboa, M. (2009). Easy ways to organize your family’s medical records. Health and wellness: women’s’ health: Retrieved August 19, 2010 from www. sheknows. com. Health World Net. (2010). Heads or Tails? Because every story has two sides. Retrieved August 19, 2010 from http://healthworldnet. com/HeadsOrTails/electronic-medical-records-the-pros-and-cons/? C=6238. Jansen, Stephen. (2009). Organizing your patients medical records.
Retrieved August 19, 2010 from www. clinicomp. com. Parikh, Rahul. (2009). The health care blog: should you keep your own medical records. Retrieved August 19, 2010 from www. thehealthcareblog. com/the_health. Tolomeo, C. , Shiffman, R. , & Bazzy-Asaad, A. (2009). Electronic medical records in a sub-specialty practice: one asthma center’s experience. Journal of Asthma. 2008 Nov; 45(9):849-51. United States Environmental Protection Agency. (2005). Basic Requirements of an Electronic Recordkeeping System at EPA. Retrieved August 19, 2010 from http://www. epa. gov/records/tools/erks. htm.