When a patient seeks a medical clinic or private practice, a relationship of trust begins between them and the healthcare provider. Extremely private information will be collected and analyzed, and this will determine the appropriate diagnosis and treatment.
People trust not just their health (and their lives) to healthcare providers, but their private data. The doctor is not the only one who has access to their information. The data can also be accessed by other hospitals, specialists, laboratories, insurers, and any professional involved in patient care.
It’s understandable that some people have concerns about their privacy and do not feel comfortable telling the doctor everything they should.
Find out how to can overcome this resistance by ensuring a safe medical data collection/handling environment.
Role of Medical Data in Efficient Patient Care
Incorrect medical records or inadequate data processing are the main reasons for medical errors, according to a 2019 study published at the National Center for Biotechnology Information’s (NCBI) website. Encouraging patients’ health information sharing, and reducing patients’ withholding, may increase the accuracy and quality of data available in health IT systems, ensuring a faster and safer service.
Trust in medical providers plays an important role and affects the quality of the doctor-patient relationship. When handing over their private data before or during medical care, patients need the assurance it will be stored and treated securely, and will only be shared with third parties when necessary.
In addition, data sharing is very important for larger-scale analytics or epidemiology/disease tracking, allowing for accurate and up-to-date statistics to be calculated. The COVID-19 pandemic, for instance, highlighted the importance of having updated medical data.
Employing standardized data management systems, in the form of electronic health records (EHRs), helps reduce errors, thus enabling safe and efficient management of medical data.
Patient Trust Leads To Effective Treatments
Implementing security safeguards is the best way to increase patients’ trust whenever they have to provide data to their medical teams. Sharing the most complete, accurate, and timely patient information possible brings many advantages to healthcare professionals and patients, including:
• Improved patients’ outcomes by providing up-to-date information on their health status, drug allergies, previous diagnosis, etc.
• Reduced readmissions by allowing more personalized care.
• Fast tracked diagnosis, allowing for safer and more adequate prescription of medicine.
• Lowered risk of costly medical errors caused by incomplete or outdated data.
• Avoiding duplicate testing with each new appointment.
• Cost reduction with less paperwork and less process repetition.
At the same time, sharing incomplete or out-to-date data can have many negative consequences, including:
• Less effective treatments without data on evaluation and treatment plans.
• Poor communication between different professionals treating the patient.
• Incorrect treatment decisions.
• Possible bias for certain treatment/s due to lack of patient data.
• Affects the billing process.
• Generates outdated data for patient-related studies.
Boost Patient Trust With Personalized Care
With complete patient data, hospitals, medical clinics, and private practices can set up reminders and alerts in their EHR systems.
The functions and advantages of using EHRs allow different professionals treating the same patient to be quickly and appropriately alerted to possible safety issues, such as:
• Flags for potentially wrong medications, doses, or frequencies.
• Alerts about potential drug interactions/allergies.
• Alerts about vaccination.
• Reminders to provide preventive care screenings.
Accurate patient information in a hospital’s EHR system can also facilitate patient education and self-management.
Complete Information Can Save Lives
Medical data is important and can save lives. Reinforcing the trust between patients and healthcare providers is a key component to ensuring they provide the most complete data.
When a patient is seen by a healthcare professional or receives any medical treatment, this seemingly simple procedure immediately generates a large amount of data. In a single hospital or clinic, this data is often exchanged between different professionals. The possibility of a data breach or misuse of medical history exists.
It’s therefore essential to store, handle, and share all patient data quickly, easily, and securely. Having a well-structured EHR system can streamline these data and provide patients the assurance that their data is in the safest hands.
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