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Contributing Writer · Jan 24, 2011

Patient Demographics in an EMR Recognize Diversity

As both a patient and a mixed race American, I’m extremely happy to see that the ONC is requiring multiple race options for EMRs. Last week, Practice Fusion released another upgrade to our web based EMR that satisfied ONC Meaningful Use requirements.

Now patient demographics in the Basic section of the Patient Dashboard are much more detailed. There is even a more sophisticated search function, which will begin to persist in other features.

My doctor can now record that I am both Caucasian and Pacific Islander. Heck, if I want to get really detailed I can mention that I have Chinese blood as well.

Being mixed race, I remember struggling through standardized forms in the past when forced to choose a single background. The fact is that mixed race Americans are the fastest growing demographic in the country. It’s therefore so encouraging that the physicians will be able to recognize us, perhaps more so that the government is behind it.

I’m excited for the benefits of more insightful reporting on electronic health records. Am I a member of a group with disproportionate healthcare benefits? Am I specifically susceptible to particular diseases?

In the Patient’s Chart in Practice Fusion, enter the Basic area. There you will see options for gender, date of birth, address and now a Demographic area that includes race.

Derek Ward
Trainer, Product Evangelist
Practice Fusion EMR