Digitised vs Digital Medical Records

As hospitals and other healthcare providers transition from paper records to electronic records their workflow and information assets change significantly. This “digital revolution” introduces a critical transition point: There is disparity between truly digital medical records and merely digitised paper records. Understanding and addressing this disparity makes a huge difference in a hospital’s ability to harness the full potential of the technologies that already exist in the environment with their ability to enhance data-driven decision making, predict patient condition trajectories, and streamline process.

A truly digital record conforms to the information that originates and exists in electronic format from inception. Digital records are by design dynamic, interoperable and accessible across various applications, systems and platforms. They are structured to facilitate seamless integration providing real-time data exchange between clinicians, patients and hospital leadership. Where data is captured digitally and managed well, the records allow for effective aggregation and the application of analytics to predict outcomes, future states and more effective decision making for clinical, research and administrative uses.

Digital Records

Digital records are created and stored electronically from the outset, often in specialised electronic health record systems.

They are dynamic, interoperable, and accessible across applications, systems, and platforms, facilitating real-time data exchange between clinicians, patients, and hospital leadership. Well-managed digital data allows for effective aggregation and analytics application, aiding prediction and decision-making in clinical, research, and administrative realms

Digitised Records

Digitised versions of physical documents or documents originally created in a digital format.

Digitised records are static versions of paper documents. Hospitals often see benefits in converting to digital, like cost and storage reductions, but drawbacks outweigh the perceived savings. Digitised records lack interoperability, hindering trend analysis and insights. Optical character recognition can also introduce errors when translating handwritten text on the digitised documents.

Benefits of Digital Medical Records

Introducing truly digital records does not need to be expensive. Rather, it can deliver significant savings in eliminating double handling of paper to scanned records and the management of paper. Further, digital records establish the basis for advanced analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence supporting actionable insights, predict trends in patient condition, operating room utilisation, bed occupancy and revenue outcomes. The ability for clinicians to access comprehensive patient histories, reducing redundant diagnostic procedures and managing medications along with better coordination of care activities leads to improved clinical outcomes and cost efficiencies.

In contrast, the introduction and reliance on digitised records can inhibit access to comprehensive data, interoperability, aggregation of data. This in turn can lead to increased handling of paper, the need to include printed barcodes on stationary, along with adding the patient label to scanned documents resulting in increased document management, gaps in continuity of care and possible sub-optimal outcomes for patients with decreased cost efficiencies for hospitals.

The Future of Digital Medical Records

As pressure is brought to bear for hospitals in the form of more stringent compliance requirements, tighter controls from health funds with less favourable contracting arrangements, hospitals need to prioritise the adoption of truly digital records.

While this does require investment in interoperable platforms, it is an investment well considered. This is especially true when the solution can be delivered as a Service, responding to the critical requirements of cyber security, privacy and patient information security.

By prioritising digital over digitised, hospital operators are positioning to respond to the ever-changing challenges. Our MasterCare SaaS solution enables you to utilise digital medical records, paving the way for the future by improving productivity and profitability with seamless clinical workflows.

Who We Are

MasterCare is part of the Global Health family, building Australian solutions designed for tomorrow’s healthcare system, connecting clinicians with their consumers. Our vision is to enable a connected technology ecosystem delivering better outcomes, increasing productivity and profitability.

As an ASX listed company, we are proudly Australian owned and operated, and have a market-leading understanding of the healthcare landscape. We listen to our customers and collaborate to build technologically advanced, innovative and market leading bespoke software and SaaS solutions.

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About MasterCare

At MasterCare, we help Australian health providers better meet the needs of their communities.

Healthcare is a complex business, and compliance regulations and funding requirements have made it increasingly difficult for modern-day service providers to deliver excellent care. We listen and work with our customers to create tailored software solutions and SaaS, so our clients can simply focus on delivering services that result in better patient outcomes for their communities.

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