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Designing electronic health record technologies for a "small planet"

Following on the heals of federal health officials releasing standards for electronic medical records, The Health Care Blog has published an interesting article discussing principles for developing such health information technologies.

In advocating for designing electronic heath records that promote collaborative exchanges of ideas and innovations to improve health care in the U.S. and abroad, David C. Kibbe, MD, and Brian Klepper, PhD, argue:

In the U.S., many of our health problems result from the growing burden of chronic diseases occasioned both by an aging population and our sedentary lifestyles. In much of the developing world, by contrast, the local health problems-pandemics like HIV/AIDs, malaria, and drug-resistant tuberculosis-result from poverty and a lack of basic public health resources. However, similar [electronic health records] technology in each of these settings can provide efficient health data exchange and information management. Both individual and population health status could be improved with medical records that are inexpensive, simple to use, and capable of network exchange

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