A large hospital in Oklahoma City has just implemented its electronic medical records system (EMR).  According to the physicians who work there it is a disaster.  Inefficiencies have been introduced that have made patient care in an already burdensome and bureaucratic environment frustrating, almost impossible.  Patient histories all look the same except for the exceptions.  There is no opportunity within the “check the box” platform to create a patient record distinguishable from the next.  The result is a meaningless patient history.  

Then there’s patient confidentiality.  That the federal government passed legislation to punish those not agreeable to adopting EMR and furthermore paid for about half of the expense should have raised some eyebrows.  Isn’t it enough to know that as badly as Uncle Sam wanted this implemented, that it must be a bad idea?  

As of this moment, right now, this very instant, I am declaring the absence of EMR at The Surgery Center of Oklahoma part of our marketing strategy.  Isn’t it enough for you to know that we have refused to implement the EMR rationing tool of the government goons?  Dont’ you feel better about the security of your confidential medical information, knowing that we have refused to follow the other lemmings dropping off the cliff?  Seriously.  Isn’t this a consideration, in addition to price and quality when deciding where to seek care?  

Once your medical information is digitized in a hospital setting, it is no longer secure.  The “benevolent” state will use that information to determine if you belong to one of the “expensive groups,” groups that hurt the state’s profit and loss statement.  What do you think they’ll do with this data?   The good of the state outweighs the rights of the individual, no?  Let’s state this in German:  Das Wohl des Staates überwiegt die Rechte des einzelnen, nicht?  Much better in the German, I think.  Someone once said, “..the only thing new to you is the history you don’t know.”  This “free” health care, and the central health planning that goes along with it are the spawn of the Nazis.  You can read Richard Ebeling’s article here if you doubt my last provocative sentence. Where do you think we’ll end up, following this path?

Your medical secrets are safe with us at The Surgery Center of Oklahoma.  We have no plans to adopt an EMR system.  Ever.

G. Keith Smith, M.D.