Medical Record Accuracy in the past was poor in most areas. Clinical documentation had many flaws and lacked organization. Errors by medical practitioners did not seem to follow a consistent pattern of progression toward improved clinical practice. An overall lack of collaboration between healthcare organizations led to organizational failure in clinical records. There were too many cases of neglect or failure to act on the findings of previous investigations.
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) have brought major changes in HIPAA practices. First, privacy is more important than ever. Privacy regulations now require that providers use patient information in ways that will keep private patient records confidential. Second, standards have been developed to increase oversight and regulation of health care providers. Finally, standards are being established for enhanced collection and sharing of personal information about patients. This is amide easier by using a record indexing solution.
As a result of all these new requirements, more accurate records are available today than ever before. All records are now required to be maintained in a coordinated manner so that appropriate clinical risks are identified. Clinical governance is improving because of this. Opportunities exist to share more accurate information. New technologies are being put into place to ensure that clinical records are error free.
Efforts are now underway to improve the timeliness of clinical data capture and evaluation. Clinical governance groups are jointly working on standards that would require providers to report progress in a timely manner. Opportunities exist to share even more accurate data. Sharing is becoming more important as the pace of care increases and the effects of new drugs become more pronounced.
Improvement in medical record accuracy can benefit both patients and health care providers. It can reduce medical errors that can have serious consequences. It can also reduce the workload for physicians and other professionals who must read and interpret large volumes of data. Healthier patients can gain access to improved care at a lower cost because of improvements in record accuracy.
The standards have been established by the American Medical Association, the American College of Medical Specialists, the American Dental Association and the National Practitioner Data Bank. These groups work together to promote the standards and ensure that they are followed. To make sure that a practice adheres to the guidelines, a certification program is sometimes required. This program is often sponsored by a pharmaceutical company or an insurance provider. Once the program is complete, a medical malpractice lawyer may be brought in to make sure the standards are being followed and that any improvements are being made.