I'm not a Luddite, but as far as the large number of offices not adopting electronic records goes, I'd like to give a high grade to those who do not fall into the trap of putting patients' health information on the Internet. As soon as a patient's medical record is sent to the government, or an insurance company, it's open to public exposure to hackers or disgruntled employees, or even those willing to sell the information.
Even the Pentagon's computers have been hacked into. Once something is recorded and sent online it's out there forever. I doubt if our senators or congressmen or the president will allow their private records to be placed on some national database of health information, the way they want all of us to do. All this is for the bean counters as a prologue to controlling the practice of medicine by the third-party payers, not to improve individual patients' care.
Jerome Sinsky, M.D.Escondido, Calif.
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