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Electronic health records

CanadianEMR awarded funds to evaluate eHealth

VANCOUVER – CanadianEMR, a comprehensive eHealth web site for physicians and a provider of electronic solutions for doctors, announced that it has been awarded funding from the National Research Council-Industry Research Assistance Program and MITACS. The research project will answer the question: “What is the value of eHealth in the context of Electronic Medical Record adoption and usage?”

Using statistical methodologies and various data sets, CanadianEMR aims to build a model that will predict the benefits of EMR adoption in relation to the overall value of eHealth, based on specific geographic regions or groupings of use.

Research indicates there is very little evidence linking the adoption of EMR systems to patient satisfaction, health outcomes, or even access to healthcare. Although most believe that EMR adoption has an important part to play in the overall benefits that can be demonstrated through the use of Information Technologies, there is very little evidence to this effect.

From June to September 2008, Greig Pothan, MBA/CMA (Certified Management Accountant) Candidate at UBC Sauder School of Business worked with CanadianEMR to develop statistical models that can be linked to EMR adoption and satisfaction as a foundational measure in relation to other health and system outcome measures.

CanadianEMR believes this will be important work that will inform government, industry and other public bodies regarding the value of investment in EMR in relation to the overall value of eHealth.

CanadianEMR is collaborating with the BC Medical Association, University of Victoria, Canadian Institute for Health Information, and Canada Health Infoway, and has been using National Physician Survey data.

One of the funding agencies, MITACS, is a research network based at Simon Fraser University. On June 5, 2007, the Ministry of Advanced Education of the Government of British Columbia announced $10 million for a major expansion of the MITACS Internship Program. This funding launched ACCELERATE BC –- BC’s Graduate Research Internship Program, expanding it to include all university faculties and disciplines in the province. Because of this new funding, 650 internships were to be offered in BC from 2007 to 2011.

ACCELERATE BC connects BC companies with the research expertise within the province’s universities. Graduate student interns, under the supervision of a university faculty supervisor, undertake a four or eight month project which investigates a research challenge experienced by a partner company.

Half of the intern’s time is spent on site with the partner company, interacting with staff, collecting data and furthering their understanding of the challenge. The remainder of the intern’s time is spent at their home university, developing a new tool, technique, methodology or solution to the partner company’s research challenge.

Companies benefit from accessing the intellectual capital within the province’s universities while connecting with potential future employees. Graduate interns benefit from the opportunity to apply their research skills to real-world challenges.

For further information about this research project, please contact CanadianEMR: