re: EHRs Linked to Errors, Harm, AMA Says
I can certainly see why "C&P" and other automation items could cause errors and thus impact [potentially] care quality and safety. But to say that the EHR is linked to errors is very much like saying that the driving of cars is linked to vehicular accidents and the resulting injuries and deaths. Before technology came to medicine, errors were made by people out of ignorance, accidents or arrogance. The situation is no different now. Any sort of tool, when mishandled, can produce negative results. Human health is not entrusted to computers: it is entrusted to humans, who must THINK about what they are doing BEFORE they act. The human is still the final control step regardless of what instrumentality they might be using. Healthcare has no choice but to automate: care quality, information sharing and cost control, and in the end the patient, will continue to suffer otherwise. But automation must be done intelligently, with care and diligence, remembering that the computer is a tool to be used by our brains, not the reverse. The human is accountable, not the tool, for the error and its consequence.