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February 1, 2009
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EMRs are Over-Rated: Top 11 Reasons

Posted on: 12.13.2008 4:14:59 PM Posted by Suresh Gunasekaran

Don't get me wrong, EMRs could be great, maybe even better than the WWW.

When I lived in the Bay Area in the late 90′s, I was struck by the fact that everyone said the Internet and specifically the WWW was earth shattering, game-changing, and would make us forget all that preceded it (in 1998!). The point being that in the 90′s, we could imagine the tremendous potential of the internet age, but the realities were still a far cry from that. A decade later we have come a very long way, but still more is left on the journey.

Keep in mind that I'm a CIO who just went live with many EMR components in the past 2 months so I may be a bit more deluded than usual. I take tremendous pride with what our organization has done and how much better life truly is as a result of the system implementation. However, there is a part of me that feels like some CEOs/CIOs in 1998 that read the press, spent the money, and built a fancy website for their company, and said “Now what?”

Just putting up the website didn't change the world. 1998 was the beginning: putting up a website or paying someone a lot of money to put up the website didn't change the game. However, everyone accepting that they were going to use the Internet over the period of a decade did change the world.

The healthcare industry accepting that we are going to use EMRs and President Obama affirming this direction will change the world.

(To read the posting in its entirety, visit

Healthcare Informatics 2009 February;25(14):12-14

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