By now, just about every hospital, doctors office, and clinic in the US has switched to an EMR or planning on it soon. Electronic Medical Records systems fall into one of two categories: either they are software based EMRs or they are web based EMR systems. If you're new to the EMR industry, you will need to decide which way you want to go. Or, perhaps you are already using a software based EMR system, but you wonder now whether you should have gone with a web based Electronic Medical Records system. Let's look at the common distinctions between a web based and a software based EMR solution.
Software based EMR systems are older than web-based EMRs, and they use older technology. However, since software systems have been around longer than the multi-platform, access from anywhere, Internet based EMR solutions, they are used by more doctors and clinics around the world. Some experts in the field predict that everyone will eventually switch over to a web-based system, since it is so much more convenient, while others insist that it will take a long time for the large numbers of hospitals using software based systems to transfer over to a web-based system. Software based solutions offer you a lot of advantages, including (in many cases) a side-by-side medical practice management software solution that complements your EMR system.
Some of the advantages of the web-based system are that web based systems are highly convenient; they can be viewed from any location you can get Internet service, anywhere in the world. Web-based systems are cross platform (no more worries about viewing files differently from your office computer that runs on Windows as opposed to viewing the same file at home on your Mac iPhone). But perhaps the biggest advantage is the file sharing ability of a web based EMR system. With a software based EMR, it is difficult (and sometimes impossible) for doctors or clinics outside your network to share files and view information.
If one of your patients goes to a doctor in another state or outside your clinic, you can't read other doctor's notes on your patient's files, and they can't view your notes. Software based EMR systems are just a little archaic this way, and it is often a lot of bother to send copies of medical records or request them from other clinics. Web based EMR systems, in general, offer all of the same benefits as a software based EMR system, but offer added convenience and file-sharing ease.