Impact of electronic health record systems on information integrity: quality and safety implications

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This is a review of the 2013 article, “Impact of Electronic Health Record Systems on Information Integrity: Quality and Safety Implications”, by Bowman, Sue, MJ, RHIA, CCS, FAHIMA.


There are many benefits associated with the implementation and use of Electronic Health Records, but there are also risks and consequences as well, especially when it comes to design and use. Sue Bowman reviews and discusses a few of the risks and consequences associated with poor design and improper use of EHR’s in this article.

EHR Adoption issues

American healthcare is eager to see the benefits associated with the adoption of Health Information Technology (Health IT), current it appears costly and inadequately regulated. “Many EHR’s have been developed from erroneous or incomplete design specifications; are dependent on unreliable hardware or software platforms; and have programming errors or bugs."[1]

Risks and Consequences

Adopting a poorly designed EHR or improperly utilizing an EHR leaves many healthcare providers vulnerable to several risks. These risks include software failure, usability issues, and inappropriate document capture, which can lead to instances of healthcare fraud and abuse.

Methods to reduce risk and consequence

While the benefits of EHR’s outweigh the risks and consequences, addressing the risks and consequences now will help improve the future of EHR use. Implementing and regulating standards for the design and utilization of EHR’s can drastically minimize the risks and consequences being experienced with poor design and improper use of EHR’s today.


Fraud is major concern in today’s healthcare. EHR’s provide and opportunity for fraud when poorly implemented or if utilized incorrectly. Addressing these issues has not been regulated or properly managed amidst the adoption of Health IT. Addressing issues that provide opportunity for fraud and abuse will help to ensure the privacy and security of Personal Identifiable Information (PII) and Personal Health Information (PHI), as well the affordability of Health IT.

Related Articles

The impact of electronic health records on healthcare quality: a systematic review and meta-analysis


  1. Bowman 2013. Impact of Electronic Health Record Systems on Information Integrity: Quality and Safety Implications