EMR, RHIO and Nationalized Healthcare

Posted on December 16, 2009 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Today I started discussions with someone about an RHIO and EMR project in China. I’ve always been fascinated with China. Maybe it’s the mystery of 1.2 billion people for which we know very little. I don’t know, but I’ve always found China intriguing.

Turns out that I’m just as intrigued with China when it comes to healthcare technology as well.

Let’s talk about some of the challenges of an RHIO in the US. Now think about how many of them are solved by having a nationalized healthcare system and how many of those challenges just don’t exist. I’m not saying that China won’t have its own challenges associated with implementing an RHIO, but it seems that they would be more manageable. Espescially if you get the right people on board. Plus, it would likely mean getting less people on board than we have to deal with in the US.

Another question is how China deals with issues like privacy and ownership of healthcare data. I’m sure they have some privacy laws, but they don’t have fears of insurance companies using their healthcare info against them. Also, the government ownd the healthcare data and likely can transfer it as they please between clinics (since they run them all, no?).

Plus, unlike the US there is tremendous advantage for them to not do duplicate tests. The US is the opposite. This makes a nice case for creating a solid infrastructure for exchanging data in an RHIO to lower costs.

Lots more to think about. If you know more about healthcare and/or EMR/RHIO in China I’d love to hear more about it. Plus, I’m interested in connecting with healthcare professionals I China as well.