EMR vs EHR : What are the Differences & Benefits ?

Electronic Health Records(EHRs) and Electronic Medical Records (EMRs) were developed back in 1992. They were developed to enhance medical treatments and get rid of paper records. But many of us have confusion regarding the usage difference and the services they provide.

As a healthcare software development company, we have explored this topic for you and tried to clear out the confusion between EMR vs EHR. To add more to it we have also added, What kind of benefits do these electronic medical records and electronic health records systems offer, and most important of all what is the core difference between the two?

1. What is EMR (Electronic Medical Record)?

As the name implies, an EMR-electronic medical record is a digitalized sort of the patient’s health. If you want to check out your medical history or any recent diagnosis, you will find these records in an EMR system As mentioned earlier, these records are just replacements for paper. Otherwise, everything remains the same.

Here’s what cancer.gov says about the definition of EMR.

According to Cancer Gov EMR

You get full-fledged data online for the betterment of patient care. Healthcare professionals such as doctors, and nurses are able to communicate effectively as they can check the data whenever they feel like it and prescribe accurate diagnoses, medications, and further treatment.

Everything now is working well together in place with these technological innovations. Healthcare organizations can focus more on optimal patient care. It is a safe bet to say after the rise of computers and the internet, things have become pretty much interesting. In fact, healthcare providers can now no longer survive without these tools since they make the transfer and managing of patient’s records and medical history so streamlined and transparent. In a typical EMR report, you can find the patient’s medical history, immunization dates, their past, and current diagnosis, anything he or she is allergic to, lab results, and the further treatment recommended.

It may quite interest you to know that the era of electronically prescribing, i.e. e-prescribing began with EMRs. Here you get precise patient health information. There is no room for mistakes or misconceptions here Also, this one is HIPAA compliant. Here security is at its paramount.

1.1 Benefits of EMR

  • There are fewer chances for manual errors or misinterpretation. Due to automation, the patient’s life and the reputation of a healthcare organization can be saved.
  • With digital patient records, doctors can provide instant and improvised services.
  • It is way easier to track digital records than paper ones.
  • Being HIPAA compliant, these medical records are safe and secured.
  • Hospitals and clinics no longer have to worry about that extra storage, since it’s no longer paper.
  • Reduction in Operational costs.
  • Unlike the fear of the misplacement of paper records, these can be shared with other health care providers as well. As the digital ones cannot be misplaced.
  • Also, EMR software has the potential to streamline communication between several departments
  • Chances for repeat tests can be reduced to a great extent.
  • Healthcare service providers can gain high ROI as the overall expense decreases.

To give you a summarized version of the benefits of EMR, here’s what Dr. Donna Manca writes about electronic medical records.

Dr. Donna Manca on EMR

Multiple doctors, physicians, nurses, and staff members can go through these clinical records and it is not at all important to be at one particular location. The era of Digitization and health information technology seems pretty enticing, isn’t it?

2. What is EHR (Electronic Health Record)?

Much like an EMR, EHR (Electronic Health Record) are digital-based reports of the patient’s medical information. Here is an EHR software, you can find everything from patients’ medical history to their current prescribed medicines, real-time diagnosis, lab results, immunization dates, treatments prescribed, and so more.

Here EHR includes:

  • Patient portals
  • The contact information of the patient
  • How many times have they visited a doctor or any other clinicians involved?
  • Are they allergic?
  • Do they carry insurance?
  • What are their family records or demographic data?
  • Crucial details about lab results or any surgeries performed to date and so forth.

An EHR system can effectively diagnose a patient and enable clinicians to access their full information. Here they get a 360-degree view of the patient and then make the decision. Knowing everything in advance also makes them take preventive measures sooner. The scope of manual errors seems to be decreasing due to more reliance on technology. As a result, a rosy future lies ahead.

2.1 Benefits of EHR

  • All the clinicians can receive accurate information regarding the patient’s total health.
  • With better access to technology, patient-centered care can be improvised to a great extent
  • A certified EHR technology does not just track data but does have the potential to recommend further treatment procedures.
  • Enhances communication between the patients and medical services providers
  • Even emergency room doctors can take a look at EHR system results so that quick decisions can be taken.
  • Unlike paper charts, there is no scope for mistake or theft
  • A fair chance to earn financial incentives via Medicare EHR Incentive Program.
  • Medical professionals can become more efficient in Office and admin management.
  • Decrease in time consumption and more productivity are delivered.

Several disruptive technologies such as AI will be found incorporated into the EMRs and EHRs systems. Lots and lots of time can be saved since the technology will diagnose the patient by going through all the medical history of the patient on behalf of the physician in prior. Here patient-centered approach can be seen to a great extent.

3. Difference Between EMR and EHR?

According to healthit.gov, the terms “electronic medical record” and “electronic health record” (or “EMR” and “EHR”) used interchangeably. Meanwhile, you will find lots of debate going on over platforms like  Quora about the difference between these two.

EMR vs EHR Quora

Moreover, this EMR vs. EHR debate is not limited to Quora, Take a look what people is discussing on Twitter.

EMR vs EHR Twitter Discussion

Well, you will find out what’s the difference between these two below.

Over the years, EMRs and EHRs have become more powerful and robust, providing healthcare professionals with a number of tools to help improve care quality and increase revenue. While there are differences between the two, EHR and EMR software offers a number of the same features and functionalities.


Since we have covered both EMRs and EHRs, now it’s time to spot the difference between the two. One of the obvious differences is the change in the middle world, EMR, and EHR. Apart from this EMR (electronic medical record) can be considered a digitized sort of paper record. Much like those paper-based records, even this one comprises a patient’s vital information starting from their medical history to their latest diagnosis reports, lab tests, and further treatment options. Whereas an EHR (Electronic Health Record) is more detailed and descriptive. In addition to all the aforementioned aspects, this one assists clinicians by recommending relevant medications and treatment. Here one can easily communicate with their patients in real-time.

Another differentiating factor between the two is accessibility. Here professionals can access EHRs at any point in time whereas that’s not the case with EMRs. This brings us to difference number three, EMR is great when it comes to cybersecurity whereas EHR being more informative is more prone to cyberattacks.

With the help of EMRs, healthcare professionals can easily track and monitor health progress, get in touch with those patients who are due for checkups, and keep tabs on them such as heart rate monitoring, is the medication working, how is their blood pressure or how is their sugar level, etc. It acts as a bird-eye view for doctors, nurses as well as patients.

Whereas by using EHRs, healthcare guys aren’t just limited to taking care of their patients they can go beyond. For example, here it is possible to share the entire medical information of the patient with other healthcare consultants. After all, it is all about relevant team effort. Here there is no one person responsible, it’s the entire team that has to take responsibility.

4. Which One to Choose From EMR vs EHR For Your Organization?

Well, both Electronic Health Records and Electronic Medical Records act as an asset for both patients as well as healthcare organizations. So it’s never either/or, you need to consider both technologies from a reliable healthcare software services provider for the betterment of everyone. So that’s all for now! In case, if you still have any doubts or queries, feel free to mention that in the comment section below.

Itesh Sharma

Itesh Sharma is core member of Sales Department at TatvaSoft. He has got more than 6 years of experience in handling the task related to Customer Management and Project Management. Apart from his profession he also has keen interest in sharing the insight on different methodologies of software development.


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