Electronic healthcare records (often referred to as EHR) are essentially a digitized method of storing health records. As per experts, EHR is more advanced, confidential, and complete when compared to paper-based storage methods, outweighing the cost of EHR implementation in hospital.

In today’s day and age, most medical facilities have implemented electronic health records of some sort. This has saved both time and money for many doctors, hospitals, and clinics across the globe. The implementation of a top-notch electronic health records system is essential in helping medical personnel keep track of their patients’ data.

Benefits vs Cost of EHR Implementation in Hospital

EHR offers many benefits to the healthcare industry. It retrieves information from a care plan or a patient’s history of past visits and can be accessed by authorized users. Other benefits include reducing medical errors, minimizing chances of misdiagnosis, reducing costs, increasing accessibility to medical records, improving workflow process, and eliminating paperwork among others.

While the general consensus is that new healthcare systems are beneficial, one of the most significant barriers to adoption for healthcare organizations is the cost of EHR implementation in hospital. Implementing an EHR system can be costly, especially if a hospital relies on external resources to do so.

Here we’ll discuss the different costs of EHR implementation in hospital to serve as guide for medical facilities:

Direct Cost

The cost of EHR implementation in hospital can be complex and involve many costs, which will vary depending on factors such as whether the practice uses a cloud-based system or an on-premise EHR.

The on-premise deployment model entails the use of a hospital’s own servers, but requires the purchase of perpetual licenses and has upfront costs. It also requires back-office technologies such as servers, data backup and storage options.

As opposed to on-site deployment, cloud-based deployment stores data on a vendor’s server and is accessed through the internet. These are generally paid for with annual and monthly fees, although the upfront costs are optional and payment is subscription-based.

Cloud-based EHR systems offer many advantages over traditional on-site EHR systems. There is no need for extra storage, servers, security, and data reserves. However, some limitations do apply: Not everyone will be allowed to access the systems.

Indirect Cost

A new electronic health record system, in addition to its implementation and upfront costs, incurs other indirect costs as well. For instance, a new system will require staff training and time for implementation, which can be expensive. Also, healthcare organizations’ productivity may temporarily decrease as they adjust to the new system. Therefore, these factors will further increase the cost of implementation.

Staff Cost

When implementing electronic health record systems, the IT team needs to be restructured. New staff may be needed if current employees do not have the technical expertise to implement the new system. If these costs are not considered in budget planning, they could significantly impact the quality of care provided in the hospital.

Conclusion about Cost of EHR Implementation in Hospital

All in all, a hospital EHR system is one of the most important things for any hospital to have. But the cost of EHR implementation in hospital will reflect upon the EHR system selected. The development of the customized solution is done by software companies that vary in cost. From the above discussion, it can be concluded that the implementation of a hospital EHR system is not as simple as it is made out to be. While the cost of EHR implementation in hospital may prove to be an investment, it is important to ensure that you have chosen to contact a reputed healthcare IT company.