Issues with electronic health care records

People in North Carolina and across the United States put great trust in their healthcare professionals. In addition to diagnosing and treating conditions, performing procedures and giving therapy, patient trust that their healthcare team will keep accurate records regarding their medical care and treatment. Many medical institutions have transitioned to using electronic healthcare records as a way to keep patients’ medical history and communicate with other medical professionals. The problem lies in the fact that glitches in the electronic healthcare record system may cause medical errors that could lead to serious injuries and even patient death.

In one recent case, a lawsuit was filed against a medical institution because a software glitch caused the death of a Vermont woman. She was complaining of consistent headaches, and the doctor ordered a brain scan to check for signs of bleeding. The software system, however, failed to send the order and the brain scan was not conducted. The woman later died of a brain aneurysm, which may have been caught earlier had she underwent the brain scan. The software system in question is used by more than 850,000 health care professionals across the country.

Other complaints of the software system have come up, as the software has been accused of attaching physicians’ notes to the wrong patients, messing up prescription start and stop dates and failed to track lab results. All of these issues could and have led to patient harm.

If you feel as though you are the victim of medical negligence, you may want to contact a medical malpractice attorney regarding your rights and legal options.

Source: Fortune, “Death by a Thousand Clicks: Where Electronic Health Records Went Wrong,” Ericka Fry and Fred Schulte, Mar. 18, 2019.

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