ESO EHR: The Modern ePCR for EMS
When electronic patient care records (ePCRs) first arrived on the scene, they were essentially electronic versions of old paper forms used by EMS agencies, ambulance services, and fire departments. And many of them stayed that way for years. Others have come and gone, as state and federal reporting requirements have become more complex.
But as documentation has become more important for EMS organizations – and the sophistication of care provided to patients by EMS has increased dramatically – the best EMS patient documentation systems have grown in both capability and popularity within EMS agencies of all types.
Today’s ePCR software is a Web-based tool that can be used on a tablet, smart device, or computer within the ambulance. Rather than recording patient information in paper form, an EMT opens a digital form that includes choices on customized forms based on presenting symptoms (as well as the typical patient information needed to open a record).
The industry’s top ePCR software offers connectivity with databases and past records, offering customization based on each agency’s needs and goals. The digital patient record is easily handed off to the receiving ED or treatment facility, and later imported into the EMS agency’s overall reporting tool to give insight into types and frequency of calls, among other data points.
So what are the practical benefits of using ePCR software?
The most obvious benefit of moving from paper forms to electronic forms is increased efficiency for your team, from initial impressions all the way up to pulling historic data for reporting and team evaluations. No longer do crew members have to return to the station and transfer data from paper to an electronic system; instead, today’s top ePCR software can integrate seamlessly with the other software tools used at your agency.
Not only does this reduce headaches and wasted time from your team members, but it can also reduce the number of errors in your system, since data must only be entered once, rather than multiple times. The overall result is increased job satisfaction for your team, as well as leaving more time for other important station duties.
These efficiencies also extend up the ladder to those tasked with pulling historic reporting data on incidents and performance for the agency. Whether it is a state or industry reporting requirement, sharing insight with the public or media, or needing to look at individual performance levels for your various shifts, being able to easily and quickly look at important performance metrics in specific timeframes is invaluable.
More Complete Records
In the rush of on-scene care, it can be easy to focus on making decisions as quickly as possible and getting the transfer going immediately. The drawback, however, is arriving at the ED with an incomplete record that may, in the long run, cause more work or redundancies. Today’s ePCR software offers agencies “progressive” customization tools that help ensure that all pertinent fields must be completed before moving on to the next step in the form. Additionally, Web-based access to various databases help ensure that your team can easily find helpful reference material instantly, such as pediatric dosage guidelines.
Better Communication with Hospitals
Another key benefit of digital patient records is an easier handoff to emergency departments, where easier communication between EMS and hospital staff not only builds better teamwork but improves patient care. Arriving to the ED with complete, trusted data can help the receiving staff make quicker, more informed decisions, and increase the trust level between in-filed impressions and treatment decisions in the ED.
Additionally, agencies and hospitals using tools like Health Data Exchange – which builds off the data entered in the ePCR – allows hospitals to share back patient information to the EMS agency, giving them insight into the final outcomes for the patient after transfer. This allows for learning opportunities that undoubtedly improve patient care in the field.
Today’s ePCR software offers a digital interface that makes producing quality EMS clinical documentation efficient and easy. Watch this 2-minute video now on how EHR from ESO, the next-generation ePCR tool, can help your fire or EMS agency succeed. You can also download the free guide, 7 Secrets of Smart ePCR Buyers.