In the past, physicians had to go through a cabinet stuffed with thousands of folders and files to view the personal information and medical data of a specific patient. Indeed, this represented the scenario that most physicians had to go through to gain access to a specific piece of information within his/her records.

 

With a rapid technology advancement witnessed throughout the past couple of decades, the medical record systems have gone through a paradigm shift. The advancement of healthcare management software applications and high-tech databases has enabled physicians to store endless amounts of information. The transformation of patient databases into Electronic Medical Records (EMR) continues to enable the practices to save a lot of space, facilitate quick access of patient information and productive use of other resources.

 

The electronic medical recording system in the US has evolved even more with the development of cloud computing systems. Cloud computing refers to the process that lies beyond storage and accessibility of digital data by means of the internet. Implementation of cloud computing in the electronic health recording system of the US has aided in the utilization of the majority of internet resources in a cost effective manner.

 

Cloud computing professionals have adopted a great commitment to discover and address various issues within the national information technological systems to endorse a wide array of systems which provide healthcare and social services. The US National Health System has recently been incorporated in the largest cloud computing project in the world related to healthcare. A large number of members of the healthcare cloud computing project are working with the American National Health System on problems within the arena of engineering and science of complex social technical systems that will help incorporation of cloud computing in the healthcare systems by large.

 

Presently many companies are seeking automated and accelerated access to patients’ health records via products and services that enable physicians, institutions and even patients to access these records “in the cloud”. The fact that Microsoft and Google are largely investing in cloud computing extends to involve their new offers for the healthcare recording systems such as Google Health and Microsoft’s HealthVault. Although these healthcare cloud computing projects are still in beta testing versions, these giant incorporations have joined with big healthcare service providers to implement their programs as Google has partnered with The Cleveland Clinic and Microsoft has partnered with Kaiser Permanente.

 

Google and Microsoft represent two prominent examples of numerous company offerings which are following the rapid trend toward placing patients’ healthcare records in the virtual cloud. This explosion of huge amounts of information is planned to be stored in huge data centers all over the US and around the world and will provide granted access to various healthcare records for physicians, insurers, patients, institutions and pharmacies. They say Steve Jobs had a vision of creating a cloud atmosphere through the different Apple offerings for the entire healthcare system in the US. It’s left to be seen if this vision is going to be on a fast track of reality. “Security” would be a major factor to consider when this hits nation-wide applicability.

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