Health & Wellness goes electronic

PULLMAN  – Health & Wellness Services (HWS) at Washington State University will transition to using electronic medical records April 10.

This is the first step toward meeting the statewide recommendation of electronically sharing medical records by 2012.

In Dec. 2006, the Washington State Health Care Authority released a recommendation that health care providers throughout the state of Washington develop a way to electronically share medical records in order to provide safer, more accurate care for patients.

“We knew this recommendation was coming,” said Donna Hash, administrative manager at HWS, “and we began preparing for the transition over a year ago. After reviewing several software packages, we decided to purchase Point and Click because it was specialized for student health centers.”

The change to electronic records will make transferring medical information easier for students and help HWS provide better quality of care to students overall. However during the first few weeks of the transition period, patient visits will take longer as the staff learns the new software.

The goal is to eliminate paper charts for patients and replace them with an electronic version that will be at the doctor’s fingertips in the exam room. The electronic records will be securely stored on campus with safety features in compliance with WSU security policies and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA).

The transition to electronic medical records may make it possible in the future for HWS to offer on-line appointment scheduling, on-line form completion, and secure messaging between health care providers and patients.

For more information, see these related sites:

Washington State Health Care Authority www.hca.wa.gov/press/12-01-06.shtml

Health & Wellness Services www.hws.wsu.edu

Point and Click Solutions www.pointandclicksolutions.com

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