The Medical-Legal Dangers of Electronic Medical Records

The federal government is pushing doctors to convert their paper charts to electronic medical records. I am still investigating all of the software programs currently available, though so far, I haven't found one I'm comfortable with. I nearly bought a program ("Dragon") that allowed me to merely dictate my notes, and then the computer would magically type my dictation into a printed office note, thus saving the cost of a medical transcriptionist. It sounded like something even a computer-challenged individual like me could handle! I was gung-ho and ready to buy it until I attended a yearly malpractice prevention conference on the legal dangers now showing up with electronic medical records. I was warned my "Dragon" electronic medical record was not without legal risks. Take, for example, the following doctor dictations that were erroneously transcribed by the computer: Patient was prepped and raped in the usual fashion. (Instead of "prepped and draped." Want to defend that one in court???)

Exam of the toddler's genitals revealed he was circus-sized. ("circumcised")

Laboratory tests revealed abnormal lover function. ("liver")

Patient was fouled up by the neurologist. ("followed up")

Patient died from the complications of sixty-eight chefs. ("CHF"= congestive heart failure. Wonder what rating the Health Department gave that restaurant?)

His headaches began when you're a goat. ("one year ago")

Patient is still under the car of the physical therapist. ("Care."  No wonder the patient needs PT!)

The patient was X-rated after a thorough exam by the doctor. ("X-rayed")

The pharmacist made an error in copulation. ("calculation")

Patient agreed to try home anal replacement therapy. ("hormonal")

An echocardiogram will be performed to rule out a paint and frame valley. ("patent foramen ovale")

The patient was discharged with homo two. ("home O2 = home oxygen)

Suspect purple muscular disease. ("peripheral vascular disease")

Will carefully monitor eyes and nose. ("I's and O's" which means input and output of fluid)

The patient needed several rounds of Kaye Ciel. ("KCl" = potassium chloride)

The patient endured a protracted hospital stay from a Staph infection in his baloney amputation. ("below-knee amputation")

Patient's foot was cold and pulseless, with a purple shoe. ("purplish hue")

Patient was admitted to the Psychiatric ward after exhibiting bazaar behavior. (Too much shopping?)

The orthopedic said back surgery would not help the patient's degenerative dick disease. ("disc")

When asked why he insisted on going home from the hospital before his doctor advised, the patient replied, "I just want to live." ("leave") In some hospitals, patients may have to leave to live!)

Hmm.....Maybe I'll stick with my paper patient charts after all!