The Advantages of Electronic Records over Paper

| April 5, 2013
outcome software, client directed, outcome informed

I'm often asked, “What are the advantages of electronic records versus paper records.”

Electronic records are a practice management tool that can give healthcare providers the advantage of transparency and simplified  outcome reporting. Studies have shown that clinicians can become more effective by the management and analysis of data involved in the treatment process.

The MyOutcomes program for example, automates the PCOMS methodology developed by Dr. Scott Miller and Barry Duncan. The program is designed to compliment your organizational structure and allow data access only to authorized personnel. This creates transparency of data for all supervisors and administrators to ensure best practices amongst clinicians and improves the development of the agency. The client directly enters their ORS scores into the MyOutcomes program at the beginning of each session and the client enters their Session Rating Scale scores into the program at the end of each session. This data instantly produces individual progress reports, case alerts, group aggregate stats and key performance indicators. Just think how long that information would take to gather from paper records and share with others! This encourages best practices which in turn are a benefit to clients seeking therapy, ensures that standard levels of care are being met or exceed, while at the same time developing clinicians effectiveness, again benefiting patients care.

This is why electronic records are being required by many funding and regulatory bodies. Failure to comply is taken very seriously as the latest news regarding Kaiser Permanente, one of the California's largest provider of mental health services, demonstrates.

Investigators determined that Kaiser “neither performs sufficient monitoring nor ensures medical information is readily exchanged between mental health and medical providers.” According to the DMHC, “…when information is not exchanged between mental health providers and medical providers in a timely fashion, the enrollee risks not receiving timely access and ready referral to mental health services”.

The scope and details of these failures were serious enough to be investigated by state and federal authorities as well as actions for recovery of funds by public and private payers, including individual Kaiser members. This investigation and its findings are a strong case for accurate and transparent electronic records!

Is your organization still using paper and pencil surveys to measure outcomes? What would your agency look like if you could increase transparency, produce reports for management and lower no shows and cancellations? Call me at 877 763-4779 or email

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Category: MyOutcomes

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