July 25, 2020 - by Parul Saini, Webmedy team
Healthcare providers have two options when picking an electronic health record (EHR) system - the first one is to pick a client-server EHR, and the second one is to have an EHR system where the software is hosted by the vendor in the cloud. Well, both of these systems have numerous, insurmountable benefits over paper records. Cloud-based EHR systems are superior as they offer significantly more advantages to small practices over the client-server model. Healthcare professionals have found that Cloud EHR technology has the potential to reduce operational costs.
EHR software gathers, store and manage the patient health data, which includes patient demographics information, medical history, diagnoses, medications, prescription, allergy list, documents, and lab outcomes. The goal of an EHR is to organize patient data, making it simple for healthcare staff to evaluate a patient's record before or during their appointment. EHRs can decrease the time health providers spends doing paperwork. EHRs can enhance performances by streamlining routine tasks, reducing errors, speeding data access/entry, thus significantly lowering costs.
Many clinics and health practices today are coping with the escalating cost and complexity of managing their on-premise EHR systems to support functionally, keeping it up to date, at enough capacity, and in agreement with evolving laws. As data volumes continue to grow, the trouble of maintaining data integrity and backups consume time and cost. The system requires dedicated support staff and operational policies to be implemented and enforced to keep the system operational at all times. Data security mechanisms have to be enforced and monitored at all times.
Cloud computing, network, and storage services are flexible, on-demand, and geo-redundant. Health Organizations pay for what they require when they need it - without capital investment. These cost gains can be very attractive because any IT system requires a system refresh in 3-5 years. These potential concerns usually become a non-issue as cloud EHR can instantly size to accommodate evolving data masses while reducing the technical account of enduring support.
Installing a client-server based EHR can be difficult for a small practice because of the upfront costs associated with setting up the IT environment. Cloud-based EHR systems have no or minimal upfront costs. Client-server EHRs would need the practice to buy or lease costly hardware. Hardware and software must be regularly observed and tested, thus requiring the hiring of IT staff. With a cloud-based EHR, all of the expenses of operating the system are covered by the EHR vendor. There is no need for hardware or maintenance or to hire any IT staff.
The cost of a client-based EHR can be unpredictable. If mistakenly servers crash or there is a surge in volume requiring additional capacity upgrades, costs can add up unpredictably anytime. Cloud-based EHR has a consistent price, which enables the practice to be more confident about its financial status.
The process of implementing and maintaining a client-server EHR can be complicated. The process of scaling up the practice can also cost you more money. Under a cloud-based EHR, all that is needed is that the practice staff access the system by a secure website or client software installed on their machine.
Switching to an Electronic Health Record (EHR) can be a daunting task. The amount of time, money, and labor that must be spent into changing the way your practice operates can be frightening at first. But with cloud-based EHRs, much of this burden is shifted to the EHR vendor, allowing the doctors and the practices to spend more time with the patient.