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The adoption of electronic medical record technology in order to prevent medical errors: a matter for American public policy

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This article argues that public policy should address the use of electronic medical records (EMRs) as a way to ensure patient safety in the United States. The article discusses the scope and nature of the medical error problem in the United States, causes of medical errors and the use of EMRs as a solution to the problem. Research has shown that EMRs can be an effective tool in reducing preventable medical error. It is therefore argued that the widespread diffusion of EMRs should be a matter of American public policy given the demonstrated socioeconomic benefits of the technology.
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Keywords: electronic medical records; preventable error; public policy

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, USA 2: Northeastern University, Boston, MA, USA

Publication date: June 1, 2008

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