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It's your health data, why is it so hard to use?



Sharing patient data electronically has become increasingly important in recent years as the healthcare industry moves towards a more digital and connected environment. However, despite the many benefits that electronic data sharing brings, there are also a number of challenges that must be overcome in order for it to be successful.

One of the biggest challenges in sharing patient data electronically is the issue of privacy and security. Patient data is highly sensitive and personal, and it is essential that it is protected from unauthorized access, use, or disclosure. This requires the implementation of robust security measures, such as encryption and authentication, to ensure that only authorized individuals can access the data. Additionally, there must be strict controls in place to ensure that the data is only used for the purposes for which it was intended.


Another challenge in sharing patient data electronically is the issue of compatibility. Different healthcare organizations and providers use different electronic health record (EHR) systems and other technologies, which can make it difficult to share data between them. This requires the development of standards and protocols for data sharing, such as Health Level Seven (HL7) and the Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) standard, to ensure that data can be shared seamlessly and easily between different systems.


A third challenge in sharing patient data electronically is the issue of data quality. For electronic data sharing to be effective, it is essential that the data is accurate, complete, and up to date. This requires the development of procedures and processes to ensure that data is entered and maintained correctly, and that errors and inconsistencies are identified and corrected as soon as possible. Scriptio relies on provider data and this is how we have such high quality records. Because we do not let patients or residents add their records, you can be assured that what you see in Scriptio is the same as the provider records.


A fourth challenge in sharing patient data electronically is the issue of user adoption. If electronic data sharing is to be successful, it is essential that healthcare providers and other users are willing and able to use the technology. This requires the development of training and education programs to ensure that users are familiar with the technology and understand how to use it effectively. Additionally, it is important to ensure that the technology is user-friendly and intuitive, to minimize the learning curve and increase adoption. Scriptio was created with ease of use as a key design principle, and it is always being improved.


A fifth challenge in sharing patient data electronically is the issue of data governance. In order for electronic data sharing to be successful, it is essential that there is a clear understanding of who is responsible for managing, maintaining, and using the data. This requires the development of policies and procedures to ensure that data is managed and used in accordance with legal and ethical standards, as well as with the needs and expectations of patients and other stakeholders.


Despite these challenges, the benefits of electronic data sharing are clear and significant. By allowing healthcare providers and other stakeholders to access patient data in real-time, electronic data sharing can improve the quality and efficiency of care, reduce the risk of medical errors, and improve patient outcomes. Additionally, electronic data sharing can improve communication and coordination between healthcare providers and organizations, which can help to reduce costs and improve the overall quality of care.


In conclusion, sharing patient data electronically is a complex and challenging task that requires the development of robust security measures, standards and protocols for data sharing, procedures and processes for data quality, user-friendly technology, and clear data governance policies. Nevertheless, the benefits of electronic data sharing are clear and significant, and it is essential that healthcare organizations and providers continue to work towards overcoming these challenges in order to realize the full potential of this technology.

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