Critical test results: Achilles heel of EMR

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A study published in the July/August issue of the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association found that electronic medical record (EMR) systems may be inadequate for critical test result management (CTRM), according to Dallas-based Vocada, a developer of CTRM technology.

The study, which looked at the effectiveness of critical test result notification at the VA Medical Center in Houston, found that providers failed to acknowledge receipt of over one-third (368 of 1,017) of transmitted alerts. In addition, in 45 of these cases (4% of abnormal results), the imaging study was completely lost to follow-up four weeks after the date of study.

An abstract of the article is available at, Vocada said.