Feature | Electronic Medical Records (EMR) | September 07, 2016 | By Erin Martin

Three Benefits of EMR Imaging Integration

EMR integrations are key to simplifying operations and streamlining workflow with existing systems

EMR

From streamlining your workflow to maximizing your return on investment (ROI), there are numerous benefits to having image integration with your electronic medical record (EMR). Below are three EMR integrations found to be very helpful to imaging centers. 

 

1. Electronic Receipt of Orders from Referrers

Much like a game of telephone, a lot can get lost in translation between the referrer and the imaging facility when sending and receiving orders. That is why it is important for your referrers to have a way to send electronic orders with the exam description, diagnosis code(s), notes, insurance information and prescription directly to your EMR. This gives your schedulers and eligibility verification staff all the information needed to verify eligibility and to obtain pre-authorization from insurance carriers, so your patients and referrers can rest assured knowing your team has what it needs to get authorization for requested exams.

Some vendors offer electronic orders as part of their EMR, which enables referrers to login to the EMR and send messages directly to imaging center staff (similar to e-mail, but part of the EMR). Others may only offer a way to integrate with your referrers via HL7, JSON or an API. JSON and APIs do not require a VPN to secure your data. Some HL7 interfaces can utilize HTTPS to transfer your data, which also eliminates the need for a VPN between systems, while keeping your patient data secure.

 

2. One-Click Integrations

Whether your picture archiving and communication system (PACS) can send a link to your referrers’ EMR, enabling them to launch images in PACS with a single click for open access imaging, or if you’re using an XML integration that launches another software for dictation, reporting, mammography tracking or billing for a streamlined workflow, one-click integrations will simplify your workflow. No more searching two separate systems to bring up the correct patient and exam — just one click launches what you need from your EMR or integrated vendors.

EMR integration is not just about HL7 anymore. There are so many ways XML can work with HL7, JSON or APIs to maximize efficiency and simplify life for all your employees.

 

3. Good Ol’ HL7 EMR Integrations

Almost all vendors support HL7 for EMR integrations. If they don’t, then I would be hesitant to use their software, unless they really do offer everything you need so there is no reason to integrate with another vendor. However, I have yet to meet an EMR that offers everything for all specialties and roles (from billing to mammo tracking to reporting) perfectly integrated onto one server. It is not an easy feat to integrate all aspects a healthcare facility needs onto one server, so I am certainly not judging or condemning software vendors for not yet offering this solution.

HL7 improves workflows by allowing data to flow in and out of your EMR. This data flow reduces data entry errors, decreases data entry time, improves efficiency, cuts costs and generally leads to happier administrators, since they no longer have tons of corrections to make and paperwork to chase down. It is true that if one of the integrated systems goes down, headaches can ensue, but you can always fall back on your old workflow prior to your EMR integration.

Until an all-in-one EMR comes to the market and healthcare facilities have unlimited budgets to purchase it, EMR integrations are the key to simplifying operations and streamlining workflow with the systems you are already working with. Investing in EMR integration is worth the return with the hours your staff will save on correcting data entry mistakes and the increased referrals you will receive from running a more efficient practice.

Erin Martin is a senior integration specialist at RamSoft Inc.

Related Content

Amazon Comprehend Medical Brings Medical Language Processing to Healthcare
News | Artificial Intelligence | February 15, 2019
Amazon recently announced Amazon Comprehend Medical, a new HIPAA-eligible machine learning service that allows...
Fujifilm Exhibits Enterprise Imaging Solutions and Artificial Intelligence Initiative at HIMSS 2019
News | Enterprise Imaging | February 15, 2019
Fujifilm Medical Systems U.S.A. Inc. and Fujifilm SonoSite Inc. showcased their enterprise imaging and informatics...
IBM Watson Health Announces New AI Collaborations With Leading Medical Centers
News | Artificial Intelligence | February 14, 2019
IBM Watson Health announced plans to make a 10-year, $50 million investment in research collaborations with two...
Medivis Launches SurgicalAR Augmented Reality Platform
Technology | Advanced Visualization | February 14, 2019
Medical imaging and visualization company Medivis officially unveiled SurgicalAR, its augmented reality (AR) technology...
Office of the National Coordinator Releases Proposed Rule on Healthcare Data Interoperability
News | Information Technology | February 14, 2019
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has proposed a new rule to support seamless and secure access,...
Siemens Healthineers Demonstrates Artificial Intelligence, Healthcare Digitalization at HIMSS19
News | Artificial Intelligence | February 13, 2019
February 13, 2019 — At the 2019 Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) global conference and e
PaxeraHealth Launching Universal Image Sharing Platform at ECR 2019
News | PACS Accessories | February 13, 2019
PaxeraHealth will launch the PaxeraShare image sharing platform at the 2019 European Congress of Radiology (ECR) annual...
NVIDIA Explores Role of AI, Analytics and Virtualization in Healthcare at HIMSS19
News | Artificial Intelligence | February 13, 2019
Digital technology company NVIDIA will highlight its newest partnerships to advance the digital transformation of...
Patients and surgeons at Hoag Memorial Hospital are looking at virtual reality reconstructions (right) over conventional 2D images

Slice v 3D: Patients and surgeons at Hoag Memorial Hospital are looking at virtual reality reconstructions (right) over conventional 2D images. Images courtesy of Hoag Memorial Hospital

Feature | Information Technology | February 13, 2019 | By Greg Freiherr
The same virtual reality (VR) reconstructions that surgeons use to plan and rehearse brain surgeries at Hoag Memorial
Philips Launches Latest Iteration of IntelliSpace Cardiovascular at HIMSS 2019
Technology | Cardiac PACS | February 13, 2019
Philips announced the launch of IntelliSpace Cardiovascular 4.1, its next-generation cardiovascular image and...