Electronic health records and other health IT are improving care. But there are privacy and access issues to consider.
Widespread use of health information technology in the health care industry will improve the quality of health care, prevent medical errors, reduce health care costs, increase administrative efficiencies, decrease paperwork, and expand access to affordable health care. But this great potential doesn't come without risk: PTs and PTAs need to have a solid understanding of health IT privacy laws and regulations, as well as policies designed to improve patient access to their own records.
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act is a key component in these considerations — but it isn't the only one. Concepts such as information blocking and interoperability also are rising to the forefront as care delivery and the use, access, and exchange of information processes change.