“I never thought I would see the day when EHRs are on the aisles with soap flakes and socks, commented David Brailer MD, former federal healthcare IT czar, “EHRs have truly become mainstream American products.”
-David Brailer, MD
(Former Federal Healthcare IT Czar)
Sam's Club Begins Selling Electronic Health Records (EMRs)
In Your Shorts, USA – Pepperoni with your prednisone? You order, WE DECIDE.
Soon, your pizza orders will be openly cross-linked with your personal health care and domestic spending records courtesy your taxpayer dime via the Stimulus bill. As LWOH has reported here, solutions like EMR's are a taxpayer giveaway to privacy invasive, for-profit companies (some who outsource or insource) and do nothing to provide funds for medical research and development along with much needed health care ACCESS to over 47 million Americans without health care coverage. (Not that they're supposed to.)
Regarding Dr. Brailer's quote above, electronic medical records (EMRs) will not be stocked in the aisles like other staples, per se. EHRs will be available through Wal-Mart's subsidiary, Sam’s Club online, according to this Healthcare IT News article.
The news that Bentonville, AR based Wal-Mart is entering the electronic medical record (EMR) market via its Sam’s Club subsidiary has been a hotly disputed topic, with most physicians raising doubts about how the arguably unnecessary and privacy invasive datamining software can possibly benefit their patients or their practices. The EMR offering is the result of collaboration among Sam’s Club, Westborough, Mass.-based eClinicalWorks (eCW) and Round Rock, Texas-based Dell.
“The New York Times first leaked the story in March, but the companies waited to release the details at the Healthcare Information Management Systems Society’s annual conference in Chicago last month. Lack of details surrounding the EMR, led to many questions about how Wal-Mart would pull it off.”
Do No Evil? Privacy and job concerns? Let's hope that the burgeoning electronic health care records market creates a tidal wave of job opportunities for physicians and the private sector alike. It should be easy. The stealth for-profit electronic medical record (EMR) sector including Google Health and Microsoft, among others, are doing what they do best: getting Joe Taxpayer to foot the bill for their profiteering. Isn't that what businesses are supposed to do? Food for thought:
“Given Google's goal of "organizing all information" it's not surprising they're tackling electronic medical records. It's a huge data set waiting to be mined - assuming that Google has no compunctions about compiling and sifting through that information to produce much more accurate epidemiological studies (or is that "to better target advertising to the health care consumer?"
As a $787 billion “economic stimulus law,” the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) which was signed by President Obama on February 17, 2009, launched new federal mandates for health information technology ("HIT") and privacy of personally identifiable information (“PII”), both on “ordinary” identity theft and on specially protected health information under HIPAA. It inaugurates a $200 million Health IT czar (our official “HIT Man”) to define and manage standards for electronic health records (“EHR”). Is HIT going to be a real “hit”? Amidst all of these challenges, there is no doubt that the EHR market is primed for huge growth in years to come.
HIT even throws its own summits!