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Five Best Practices for More Effective Use of Ambulatory Electronic Health Records to Manage Chronic Disease - 11/22/2019

The prevalence of diabetes mellitus, which affects 30.3 million adults in the United States, is increasing with 1.5 million newly diagnosed cases of diabetes each year.  An additional 84 million adults are affected by prediabetes.  Consequently, this chronic disease has become the seventh leading cause of death in our nation.1 Statistics like these have caused the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and state health departments to encourage primary care physicians to not only adopt electronic health records (EHRs) but to use them more effectively to improve management of diabetes and other chronic diseases.  This paper discusses how small physician practices in North Texas improved their tracking of quality metrics for hypertension, obesity, and diabetes by leveraging available but underused EHR functionalities.  We also describe five “best practices” for more effective use of ambulatory EHRs to manage chronic disease based on findings in this study.


Electronic Health Records: The Dream vs. the Reality - 11/21/2019

The only way forward with electronic health records is to continue to improve the system we have, but to do so with a vigor we have not expended to date. We need a significant increase in federal funding and to draw the best minds in technology to build a fully integrated system. We need significant input from physicians and nurses to create EHRs that are intuitive, efficient, and reliable.


Looking to Implement Remote Patient Monitoring Technology In Your Practice? - 11/08/2019

How do you successfully implement remote patient monitoring technology in your practice? Answers to that question and many more can be found in the American Medical Association’s (AMA’s) Digital Health Implementation Playbook.


Switching EHRs? Transferring Data Can Be a Hurdle - 10/30/2019

Ready to part ways with your electronic health record (EHR) and move to a different one? Transitioning data from the old EHR to the new one might present some challenges. TMA's new publication, Switching EHR Systems, is available in the TMA Education Center.


Keep Your Records Straight and HIPAA-Compliant With TMA CME - 10/18/2019

TMA’s in-depth publication, Managing Your Medical Records, will help physicians and front office staff better understand the rules of consent, release, and disclosure. Get up to speed on everything from practical, efficient methods for record organization to best practices for record storage that’s HIPAA- and HITECH-compliant.


Medical Devices Could Be Vulnerable to Hackers, FDA Warns - 10/02/2019

Certain medical devices and hospital communications networks could contain cybersecurity vulnerabilities that could allow a remote attacker to take control of the device and change its function, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned on Tuesday.


Check Your EHR Settings by Oct. 1 - 10/01/2019

Tuesday is Oct. 1, so if you participate in Medicaid and/or Medicare incentive payment programs, hopefully you’ve already upgraded to the 2015 certified electronic health record technology.


Improve Patient Safety by Focusing on Safe Practices for Drug Allergies - 09/10/2019

Your electronic health record likely contains multiple types of clinical decision support (CDS) tools to help you track a patient’s drug allergies. But despite the many CDS tools, adverse drug allergy interactions continue to occur. To help practices curb those adverse reactions, the Partnership for Health IT Patient Safety created an online toolkit that focuses on using CDS and health information technology to safely prescribe medications.


Upgrade Your EHR Before It’s Too Late - 08/28/2019

If you participate in Medicaid and/or Medicare incentive payment programs, time is running out to upgrade to the 2015 certified electronic health record technology (CEHRT).


How User-Friendly Is Your EHR? - 08/16/2019

To help you prevent these types of errors in your practice, TMA has created a Technology and Patient Safety webpage that includes articles, interactive tools, manuals, and guidelines on how to make your electronic health record (EHR) technology safer. Use it to find information on contracting with EHR vendors, implementing or switching systems, and keeping your system secure.


How Can You Exchange Patient Data? - 08/08/2019

Health Information Exchange can be accomplished in different ways, and the needs and requirements vary by practice. While there are numerous ways to accomplish HIE, there are four types of HIE that are currently in use.


Get $99 Website Design During July - 07/12/2019

How does your practice’s website look? Does it look great on any device, including mobile and tablets? If your website could use some help, Texas Medical Association-endorsed vendor Officite helps practices create a professional website that works on all devices.


EHR Rules Would Add to Physicians’ Costs, Burdens, TMA Says - 06/25/2019

Proposed rules to promote electronic health record interoperability across the health care system would place excessive burdens and costs on physicians, while making it more difficult for patients to access their electronic health information.  That’s the thrust of a pair of letters the Texas Medical Association wrote to two federal health agencies last week.


Physicians Concerned Over State’s Inaccurate Death Reporting - 06/25/2019

Some Texas physicians are concerned that the state’s death statistics are not as accurate as they should be. Like in many states, Texas’ death reporting system feeds inconsistent information into the state’s vital statistics database. As a result, distorted death statistics inaccurately portray how people are dying, which could have negative public health implications.


TMA Pushing To Delay PMP Mandate, Buy Time for Integration With EHRs - 06/19/2019

Starting Sept. 1, physicians will be required to check the PMP before issuing any prescription for opioids, barbiturates, benzodiazepines, or carisoprodol, a mandate the Texas Legislature passed during the 2017 session. As this year’s session of the legislature enters its back stretch, TMA is hoping to persuade lawmakers to delay that mandate until March 2020 to allow for a widespread rollout of PMP-EHR integration.


Why You Need to Prepare for Voice Search - 05/31/2019

Voice search, such as through Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, or Apple Siri, is becoming an essential part of modern life. In fact, 72% of voice device owners use it as part of their daily routine. Neglecting this growing technology could cause your practice to miss out on potential patients. But adapting a voice-first mindset could help you attract new patients and stay connected to current ones.


Medicaid Seeks Physicians for EHR Program Review Panel - 04/25/2019

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission is accepting applications for its Medicaid Electronic Health Record Incentive Program Audit Ad Hoc Review Panel.


TMA Member Benefits: Help Avoiding Risk - 03/08/2019

TMA helps physicians "Avoid Risk" by providing expertise on regulations, and tools that mitigate exposure to practice risks.


Making the CEHRT Switch: EHR Upgrade Required for Incentive Payment Programs - 02/27/2019

In medicine, a lot of things can be stressful. Done right, the switch to the latest certified electronic health record technology (CEHRT) doesn’t have to be one of them. The change is inevitable in the coming year for physicians already using EHRs to participate in Medicare or Medicaid incentive payment programs. Most practices are using the 2014 version. Beginning in 2019, physicians must use 2015 CEHRT for the 2019 performance period, which ultimately determines their payment.


Be in the Know When You Purchase an EHR - 02/15/2019

The recently updated TMA EHR Vendor Comparison Tool provides TMA member physicians access to an assessment of EHR products that have a solid Texas market base. It gives physicians a view of company information, product functionality, pricing, and interoperability capabilities when comparing EHR systems.


Greenway Clients Entitled to Free EHR Upgrade After Fraud Settlement - 02/12/2019

Electronic Health Record vendor Greenway Health has been ordered to offer its clients free upgrades to its latest version of Prime Suite as part of a settlement in a multimillion-dollar fraud case.  


Sign Letter Urging Congress to Address EHR Usability - 02/08/2019

This week, MedStar Health National Centers for Human Factors in Healthcare teamed up with the American Medical Association to launch a campaign asking Congress to address safety-related usability challenges in electronic health records.


Problems With Texas’ New Vital Statistics Registry Fixed, Official Says - 01/07/2019

The new TxEVER system should be operating smoothly after experiencing technical difficulties in the days after going live, an official with the Department of State Health Services (DSHS) said Friday. If you weren’t already aware, the DSHS on Jan. 1 rolled out the system for processing death and birth certificates that it says will be easier and more accurate.


Switching EHRs? Turn to TMA for Help - 12/06/2018

There are many things to consider when looking at a new EHR, including price, which functions suit your practice’s needs, and which vendors offer the right ones. If you’re considering switching to a new EHR, the Texas Medical Association has information and resources to help you make an informed decision.   


TMA Member Benefits: Future Proof - 12/04/2018

TMA Member Benefits: Future Proof In the past year, cyberattacks on healthcare facilities have increased by 35%. The cost of a breach can be huge: an average of $402 per compromised record, plus fines. TMA makes robust security for your practice easy through education and services designed to manage the worst technology risks.   Not a TMA member?  Here's what members are saying about the services that TMA provides:   By joining TMA, you have access to a variety of resources to help secure your practice online: Articles and Resources: Cyber Threat Invading Texas Puts Patient Records at Risk – TMA News Release, 2016 The Rise of Ransomware – Texas Medicine, 2016 Is a Ransomware attack at HIPAA Breach? – E-Tips, 2016 Getting Patient Data From Your EHR: What Does Your Contract Say? – Action, 2016 Electronic Health Record (EHR) Comparison Tool identifies the best EHR for your practice. TMA Endorsed Vendors : DocbookMD: is a HIPPA-secure messag...