Unprecedented financial incentives and policy changes will dramatically accelerate the shift to electronic medical records/electronic health records (“EHR”) in the next several years. This surge is expected to cause a spike in litigation over EHR implementations as software systems try to keep up with rapidly-changing regulations, and as billions of dollars in incentives draw unproven EHR products and vendors into the marketplace. Because of the amounts at stake, healthcare providers must take appropriate steps to select the best possible vendor and EHR product, negotiate appropriate contract terms, and conduct the implementation to position themselves well should a dispute arise.
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This article appeared in the May 2010 issue of Prognosis, the newsletter published by the North Carolina Bar Association's Health Law Section. It is reprinted here with their permission.