Implanting an electronic health record (EHR) into every U.S. citizen looks very promising. This procedure would involve inserting a chip or radio frequency identification device (RFID) into the individual that would contain all medical information. Access to this complete and accurate health information would help to reduce issues pertaining to patient safety and identification. What are the pros and cons regarding implanting the chip?
Keywords: EHR, implanting, patients.
We Can But Should We?
The issue of timely medical help has been debated for a long time. As many useful solutions have been offered there is one, however, that may be of practical importance in the terms of saving the patient's life. The idea of implanting an electronic health record (EHR) into every U.S. citizen came into question some time ago. This procedure would involve inserting a chip or radio frequency identification device (RFID) into the individual that would contain all medical information. As practical and helpful this idea may seem, it may still infringe some ethical principles and also may require additional safeguards. It is necessary to gather all the related information to see the pros and cons. That will help to develop relevant recommendations for this project.
It is vital to get the understanding of how the system works. Inserting a RFID into an individual that contains all medical information allows having access to complete and accurate health information. It will help to reduce issues pertaining to patient safety and identification. Thus, when the patient arrives at a point-of-care, the chip would be scanned. All of the patient's health information would be uploaded into the provider of health information system (HIS). During the encounter, new information would be stored in the HIS. When the patient is discharged, the patient's up-to-date health information would be uploaded from the HIS onto the patient's implanted chip. That will provide for up-to-date information that will, in many cases, allow saving the lives of patients who are in dire or desperate conditions.
An electronic health record (HER) is a collection of the patient's health information which was generated in a hospital setting. An average EHR is usually made of the patient's progress notes, demographics, and medications, problems, past medical history, vital signs, laboratory data, immunizations and radiology reports. It is regarded as a means to streamline workflow of medical workers, and allows generating a complete record of a clinical patient condition.
EHRs are focused on the patient's total health. They go past standard clinical data gathered in the provider's office and provide for a broader outlook on the patient's care. EHRs, designed to go beyond the health organization that provided the original collection of the data, are made to share information with other providers. One of the EHR's most beneficial characteristic is a safe data sharing, which, in its turn, results in more effective communication (Electronic Health Record, (HER)).
While implanting RFIDs may seem a narrow medical innovation it opens a whole new dimension of the population and has been the cause of many disputes that have been held in the society in respect to chip implanting. As shown above, EHRs are regarded as very helpful when dealing with the area of health care. However, they are often viewed as a gateway to much larger implications. The most important issues that hold concern for people are the loss of freedoms and liberties in the US and religious beliefs.
Even though it is highly beneficial to chip children and pets in case they get lost and many people especially those from well-to-do families become chipped for security reasons, it is still not clear how RFID technology will be used in the society in regard to privacy issues (Levant, 2005).
Also, when dealing with such a foundational issue as the freedom of religion, one needs to take into consideration the beliefs of millions of people who regard chipping as the mark of the beast policy that is designed to bring about the total control over the population. Whether one shares or not Christian values, or has the opinion of chipping as just another means of biometrical ID or medical implant (such as a dental or bone implant) it is still important to have a national consensus in order to avoid the division of the nation over such a foundational project (McGuire, 2012).
Potentially, chips can serve as a very helpful tool in facilitating everyday activities such as authenticating phones, accessing cars and computers and entering homes. However, they may also be used to track individuals by government or corporations (Greenberg, 2012).
Thus, the issue of chip implanting is very controversial but it can be seen as really promising. As with every new technology, there are many pros and cons here. However, the future belongs to chipping and if implemented properly it can become a whole new dimension for people to make their life easier and safer.