Dec 22, 2023 4 min read

What is EHR and Why is it important?

Unlock the power of EHR in healthcare. Explore what Electronic Health Records (EHR) are and understand their crucial role in modern healthcare management.

The healthcare industry is complex. Its prime focus is always the safety of its patients and providing quality care, which is much more challenging today than ever before. Healthcare professionals and patients are therefore getting to use telemedicine technology, with electronic health record systems being an inherent part of it. In today’s healthcare picture, electronic patient records (EHR) are the commonly accepted norm. 

This brings us to the big question, What is EHR?

Electronic Health Record (EHR) is a systematized set of interconnected databases containing part or all of a patient’s electronic medical records and history. This is maintained by the healthcare provider over time and may include all of the critical administrative clinical data relevant to that patient's care under the healthcare particular provider. A patient’s EHR may include demographics, progress notes, problems, medications, vital signs, past medical history, immunizations, laboratory data, and radiology reports, along with even personal statistics like age and weight, and billing information. 

The EHR greatly reduces dependency by automating access to information and has the potential to streamline the clinician's workflow. It is also capable of supporting other patient care-related activities directly or indirectly through various interfaces like quality management, and outcomes reporting. EHR provides the healthcare team, including family doctors, nurses, emergency room clinicians, and specialists, real-time access to the patient’s relevant medical information, so they can provide the best care in the most efficient manner.

Advantages of Electronic Health Records

EHRs and their ability to exchange health information via electronic means can help a practice provide higher quality and safer care for patients while creating tangible enhancements at the same time. EHRs can help providers better manage the care provided to patients and provide better health care by:

  • Providing accurate, current, and complete information about patients at the point of care.

  • Improving privacy and security of the patient data

  • Helping in the effective diagnosis of patients, reduction in medical errors, and providing safer patient care

  • Promoting health care convenience by encouraging patient and provider interaction and communication

  • Allowing for the secure sharing of electronic information with patients and other clinicians

  • Enabling safer, more reliable prescribing

  • Reducing costs through decreased paperwork, better safety standards, reduced duplication of testing, and improved health.

  • Facilitating quick and seamless access to patient records for efficiency in patient care

  • Helping promote comprehensive and complete documentation along with accurate and streamlined coding and billing process.

  • Helping providers improve productivity and work-life balance

  • Assisting providers to meet and exceed their business goals through improved efficiency

Electronic Health Records transformed health care in the following ways

  • Better health care by improving all critical aspects of patient care, including safety, effectiveness, focus on patients, education, communication, timeliness, efficiency, and equity.

  • Better health by encouraging a sense of need for healthier lifestyles among the population, including increased physical activity, better food habits, avoidance of behavioral risks, and wider use of preventative care.

  • Improved efficiency and lower health care costs by encouraging preventative medicine and treatments along with improved coordination of health care services, as well as by reducing waste and redundant tests.

  • Better clinical decision-making by incorporating and integrating patient information from across multiple sources.

How does EHR boost efficiency

  • Consists of built-in templates for physicians to refer to

  • AI assists physicians with the diagnosis and interpretation of reports

  • The E-prescribing feature saves physicians valuable time

  • Reduces the abuse of controlled substances that require a prescription

  • Checks automatically for any associated allergies or reactions to drugs

Integration of EHR with Revenue Cycle

In addition to the many advantages of EHR in the healthcare system, the most significant advantage is probably its capability of streamlining the revenue cycle and improving overall healthcare facilities. Medical practices providing diagnosis and treatment services need to be properly reimbursed to ensure financial stability.

Revenue cycle management, alongside its billing function, also plays a key role in assessing the financial health of the medical practice. A regular source of revenue is important to cover the cost of medical equipment, medications and other overheads.

Any errors in the medical information make the diagnosis and treatment of patients, a herculean task for doctors and surgeons, in addition to the evident difficulty in getting full payments and reimbursements for the treatments provided to the patients, in the later stages. Not to ignore the possible lawsuits and the prospect of paying expensive legal fees that a practice may face as a result of wrong diagnosis and treatment.  A purposeful EHR system helps avoid all these shortcomings and insufficiencies by ensuring that the patient information is accurate and up-to-date and correctly reflects on the medical bill.


Electronic health records are becoming an inevitable part of the modern healthcare scenario. EHRs are the next step in the constant progress of healthcare that has the potential to strengthen the relationship between patients and clinicians.  The data, the timeliness, and the ease of access are the factors of EHRs, that enable providers to make more informed decisions and provide improved patient care.  One of the best ways to ensure optimal utilization of the benefits of electronic health records is to achieve meaningful use. By achieving meaningful use of EHR, you can gain benefits that are beyond mere financial benefits

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