Let’s Do the Time Warp Again

I was reading an interesting article in Healthcare Informatics entitled Reality EMR’s. Interesting because I had been wondering lately about progress with Electronic Medical Records EMR’s of both the Free/Open source and Closed source kind. You see, Linux Medical News passed its 4th birthday at the end of March and it seems as though there is much talk but precious little progress among EMR’s in general.

Obviously I have taken the side of Free/Open EMR’s for good reasons but I examine Closed source to see how it is doing as well. So I had expected this article to trumpet how well proprietary EMR’s are doing.

I had little to fear. It seems like ‘Deja Vu all over again’ in the article. Particularly the same old story about a physician who quit practicing 10 years ago to start an EMR company that was going to cure all of Health-IT’s ills. It was sounding good until you hit this line:

‘…Now everything except physician progress notes and orders is online, with the help of software from Burlington, Vt.-based IDX Systems Corp. Computerized physician order entry (CPOE) pilot projects are evolving in three of the system’s five regions, with full-scale CPOE implementation expected within the next year or so…’

‘Everything’ except progress notes and orders? With the rest on the way in the next year or so? Doesn’t sound very definitive to me. It also doesn’t say how much they are paying IDX for this system that does ‘everything’ sort of kind of. The rest of the article details a morass of incompatible systems and sites as ‘Success springing up all over’. It seems like we are doing the time warp again.

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