New standard for EHRs released

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Health Level Seven has released a new, more-comprehensive standard for electronic health records that has been approved by the American National Standards Institute. Electronic health records are advocated by the federal government and many health advocacy groups as a way to make sure that doctors have more complete information when caring for patients. Previously, there was no enterprise-wide standard, which resulted in conflicting sets of standards. The HL7 standard describes 1,000 criteria across 130 functions, including medication history, problem lists, orders, clinical decision support, privacy and security. It will serve as the basis for additional functions of electronic health-records systems, and allow EHR systems to work together more easily.