Seeing a doctor other than your primary care physician (PCP) used to be risky business. Should you fall sick in a place where immediate access to your PCP was impossible, you would have to see a doctor without knowledge of your medical history, prescriptions, allergies or reactions to drugs, posing potentially serious health hazards. Nowadays, a doctor with their eyes planted on a computer screen or tablet may actually be a good thing. The use of Electronic Health Records (EHR’s) in physician offices has been credited with making healthcare more accessible and more efficient with less chance of errors.

The use of EHR’s has seen a dramatic rise among healthcare providers in recent years. The advantages for the patient are many:

1. Accessibility.

Doctors can now access their patients’ complete medical histories, giving them the ability to diagnose better, cut down on manual prescription work and order the right tests. Doctors can also exchange data instantly, especially in emergency situations.

2. Saving Time

Remember the days when you would have to go from one doctor’s office to the next with you x-rays tucked under your arm? Doctors can now immediately pull up patient records, including x-rays and lab results, along with the patient’s medical history, allowing them to focus more on the patient. This can cut down on patient wait times and make hospital visits more efficient. Not to mention the fact that you don’t have to worry about losing the documents in transit.

3. Faster claims payment

EHR software can solve billing issues and results in quicker claims turnaround times.

When choosing providers, patients should consider whether their doctor is using EHR software in their offices for improved quality healthcare.