Child Healthcare Decision-Making and Electronic Medical Records (EMR)

The need for child healthcare is acute. Each year thousands of children die in the United States from avoidable causes. Many other children remain undiagnosed and suffer life-threatening illnesses. Without prompt medical care for these children would be faced with a loss of life, and for families who do not know the extent of their child’s illness it could mean a loss of the child altogether. This tragedy is happening more often than you might think. If you or a loved one has a child who is suffering needlessly from lack of proper health care then you should consider child healthcare benefits.

Currently, there are currently no national guidelines for the storage or retrieval of patient healthcare information or there is very limited awareness of their effect. Unfortunately, many states are moving towards regulating hospitals and health care providers by means of legislation or policy. Unfortunately, most states have laws or rules governing the storage of patient health information, but because they are so scarce, they are often ignored or not followed. This lack of awareness may prevent health professionals such as doctors and nurses from acting appropriately in a situation that could have them saving a life. In many cases, these professionals are called upon to make life-or-death decisions under conditions where they have no training or experience in assessing these emergency situations. This lack of experience leaves those entrusted with such responsibility with no other option but to take a wild guess at what may occur.

Another area of concern for healthcare providers is how decisions concerning diagnoses are made. Research has found that even doctors and nurses have a difficult time making the correct decision regarding which treatment would be best for a particular health condition. This uncertainty leads to a delay in providing treatment and may result in the wrong treatment being applied, or in the worst case scenario, the wrong treatment being provided at all.

There are also areas of concern regarding patient-held health information. Traditionally, medical records were kept in locked cabinets inside of an individual doctor’s offices. This was done to protect the privacy of the patient and to ensure that healthcare providers had access to all pertinent information regarding a particular condition. As more baby boomers are aging, the need to maintain patient health information will also grow. However, in an effort to meet the healthcare needs of this growing population, many doctors are learning to adapt by developing patient-held maternal healthcare records.

These are now commonly referred to as ‘patient-held maternal records’ or PDRs. In short, a PDR is simply a digital record that is designed specifically for your health care needs and is accessed by your doctors and other healthcare professionals when it is advised by them. In short, this is essentially a form of electronic medical record (EMR). This form has proved to be invaluable for several reasons, including increasing access to healthcare, saving time by enabling earlier diagnosis and treatment, and better informing patients and their families about their child’s healthcare.

The ability to incorporate HIPAA compliance into healthcare decisions about their child’s health was created through the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Patient Protection and Security Act. The Patient Protection and Security Act was developed to help parents experience decreased collection of out-of-pocket fees and to improve healthcare quality by ensuring that healthcare providers correctly to collect all relevant information regarding a patient’s healthcare. Although the Patient Protection and Security Act sound rather obvious on its surface, there are many parents who still feel confused about the regulations. In this article, I would like to briefly explain how the Patient Protection and Security Act apply to child healthcare and why parents must become informed about the importance of having a HIPAA compliant medical records.