Patients visiting their physicians may have recently noticed a new technology. Doctors are now using computers rather than charts and often spend much of the appointment typing as they interview and examine their patients. This might be confusing or concerning for some who are wondering exactly what is going on.
This recently created information system is referred to as an electronic health record or "EHR." In 2009, President Obama (as part of his health-care initiative) mandated that most medical offices incorporate EHR into their practice by 2015. Failure to comply would result in significant fines and penalties for physicians. Nevertheless, there is still much confusion surrounding the technology and privacy for both patients and physicians.