Re: Unused Asset
As you say in the story, in many ER cases it's obvious why a patient comes in: a broken bone, for example. I know, though, from speaking to healthcare professionals that every mouse click represents time -- and time is typically the enemy in healthcare, whether it's for the patient's health (as in an ER) or so doctors can see more patients (as in a family practice). Based on what you mention about Dr. Vent's comment re: integration, I'd imagine more integration would definitely increase use because ER staff would see all the necessary info within that one click. Whenever you add another click (and password sign-on), the number of users will decrease exponentially.
Most of us are huge privacy advocates, I'd guess, but when you're in the ER you're already concerned about your health or life and have passed along as much of your info as you know. Integrating HIEs with ERs seems a natural fit, one that doesn't threaten patient privacy.