Wednesday, December 18, 2013

OIG: EHR Audits Not Used to Full Extent

The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) found that nearly all of the 800 hospitals surveyed in late 2012 had federally recommended electronic medical record (EHR) audit functions in place, but "may not be using them to their full extent."

Alarmingly, the OIG found that 44 percent of hospitals can delete audit logs. Four EHR vendors surveyed said audit logs cannot be disabled in their systems, but one noted a programmer could disable them. The OIG also said EHRs poorly designed or used inappropriately can result in poor data quality or fraud."

"Hospitals 'may not be using recommended EHR audit functions to their full extent' and '44% can delete logs'."
- Office of the Inspector General
The OIG recommended "audit logs be operational whenever EHR technology is available for updates or viewing," and "ONC and CMS develop a comprehensive plan to address fraud problems in EHRs."

Tampering with logs can easily and rapidly be determined by low-cost on-demand SaaS analytics services.

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Sources:
(a) OIG takes hospitals to task on EHR use - www.HealthcareITnews.com, 12/16/2013

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