Digital records may not cut health costs, study cautions
Computerized patient records are unlikely to cut healthcare costs and may actually encourage doctors to order expensive tests more often, a study published on Monday concludes. Research in the journal Health Affairs found that doctors using computers to track tests, like X-rays and magnetic resonance imaging, ordered far more tests than doctors relying on paper records. The study showed there was a 40 percent higher rate of image testing by doctors using electronic technology instead of paper records. The gap was even greater—a 70 percent higher rate—for more advanced and expensive image tests.
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