Identify at least three forces driving the changes to EHR. In addition to the three forces, what are the specific changes that we are seeing in the real world?

Identify at least three forces driving the changes to EHR. In addition to the three forces, what are the specific changes that we are seeing in the real world? Be sure to use at least four APA formatted references. Identify at least three forces driving the changes to EHR. In addition to the three forces, what are the specific changes that we are seeing in the real world?


Electronic Health Records (EHR) have revolutionized healthcare delivery by streamlining patient data management, improving clinical decision-making, and enhancing patient care. However, the EHR landscape is constantly evolving due to various forces driving change. In this essay, we will explore three prominent forces that are shaping the transformation of EHR systems within the last five years. Additionally, we will examine the specific changes that have emerged in the real world as a result of these forces. To provide a comprehensive overview, this essay will rely on peer-reviewed articles and authoritative sources to support the discussion.

Forces Driving Changes to EHR

  1. Technological Advancements

The rapid advancement of technology is a primary force driving changes in EHR systems. In recent years, innovations such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and big data analytics have significantly impacted how EHRs function and the capabilities they offer. For example, AI-driven algorithms can analyze vast amounts of patient data to identify patterns and trends that might be missed by healthcare providers. These technologies have the potential to enhance diagnosis, treatment planning, and patient outcomes.

According to Mandelbaum et al. (2020), technological advancements in EHRs have led to improved interoperability, allowing different healthcare systems to share patient information seamlessly. This interoperability has the potential to reduce medical errors, improve care coordination, and enhance patient safety.

In the real world, these technological advancements are manifesting as predictive analytics tools integrated into EHRs. These tools assist healthcare providers in identifying high-risk patients, predicting disease outbreaks, and even optimizing resource allocation within healthcare organizations (Halamka, 2020).

  1. Regulatory Changes and Standards

Regulatory changes and the establishment of industry standards play a vital role in shaping EHRs. The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act in the United States, for example, introduced incentives for healthcare providers to adopt EHRs while also setting requirements for meaningful use. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in Europe has influenced how patient data is handled and protected within EHR systems.

One significant regulatory change is the move toward greater patient access and control over their health records. The 21st Century Cures Act, signed into law in 2016, empowers patients to have greater access to their electronic health information. This shift towards patient-centered care is transforming the way EHRs are designed and used.

In addition to regulatory changes, the adoption of interoperability standards such as Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) is promoting data exchange between EHR systems and other healthcare applications. This enables a more holistic view of a patient’s health and allows for the integration of data from wearables, telehealth platforms, and other sources into the EHR (Bowman, 2019).

In practice, these regulatory changes and standards are resulting in EHRs that are more patient-centric and interoperable. Patients have increased access to their health records, which promotes engagement and shared decision-making. Furthermore, healthcare providers can access a comprehensive patient history, leading to more informed clinical decisions.

  1. Cybersecurity Concerns

As EHRs become more integrated into healthcare ecosystems, they become attractive targets for cyberattacks. The threat landscape for healthcare data breaches has evolved significantly in recent years, with attackers becoming more sophisticated in their techniques. Cybersecurity breaches in EHR systems not only compromise patient data but also disrupt healthcare operations and erode patient trust.

The increasing frequency and severity of cyberattacks have forced the healthcare industry to invest heavily in cybersecurity measures to protect EHRs. Security practices such as encryption, access controls, and multi-factor authentication are being integrated into EHR systems to safeguard patient information.

Additionally, the emergence of blockchain technology has been explored as a means of enhancing EHR security. Blockchain’s decentralized and immutable nature has the potential to prevent unauthorized access and tampering with patient records (Kuo et al., 2020).

In the real world, healthcare organizations are actively implementing robust cybersecurity measures to protect EHRs. These measures include regular security audits, employee training on cybersecurity best practices, and the use of advanced threat detection systems. The goal is to ensure the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of patient data in EHRs.

Specific Changes in the Real World

In addition to the forces driving changes in EHR systems, several specific changes have been observed in the real world as healthcare organizations adapt to these forces. These changes have far-reaching implications for patient care, healthcare delivery, and the overall healthcare ecosystem.

  1. Enhanced Interoperability and Data Exchange

Interoperability has improved significantly in recent years, allowing EHR systems to exchange data seamlessly with other healthcare applications and systems. For example, EHRs can now integrate with telehealth platforms, enabling healthcare providers to access patient data during virtual consultations. This interoperability has been especially crucial during the COVID-19 pandemic, as it facilitates remote patient monitoring and telemedicine services (Miliard, 2020).

Moreover, healthcare organizations are working to implement the FHIR standard, which enables standardized data exchange between different EHR systems and healthcare applications. This standardization enhances data portability and ensures that patient information is accessible across different care settings, promoting care coordination and reducing duplication of tests and procedures.

  1. Patient Empowerment and Engagement

Patients are gaining greater control over their health data and are becoming more engaged in their healthcare decisions. Many EHR systems now offer patient portals, allowing individuals to access their health records, test results, and appointment schedules online. Patients can also communicate with their healthcare providers through these portals, making it easier to ask questions and request prescription refills (Wynia & Dunn, 2019).

Additionally, some EHR systems support the sharing of health data with mobile health apps and wearable devices. Patients can monitor their health metrics, such as blood pressure or glucose levels, and sync this data with their EHR. This trend empowers patients to actively participate in managing their health and facilitates remote monitoring by healthcare providers.

  1. Improved Clinical Decision Support

Technological advancements, particularly in AI and machine learning, have led to significant improvements in clinical decision support within EHR systems. These systems can now analyze vast datasets to provide healthcare providers with evidence-based recommendations and alerts. For example, AI algorithms can identify potential drug interactions, suggest personalized treatment plans, and even predict disease progression (Rajkomar et al., 2020).

In practice, this means that healthcare providers have access to real-time, data-driven insights that can inform their clinical decisions. This can lead to more accurate diagnoses, optimized treatment plans, and improved patient outcomes. The integration of AI into EHRs also has the potential to reduce administrative burdens on healthcare professionals, allowing them to focus more on patient care.


Electronic Health Records (EHRs) are undergoing significant changes due to forces such as technological advancements, regulatory changes and standards, and cybersecurity concerns. These forces are reshaping EHR systems, making them more patient-centric, interoperable, and secure. In the real world, these changes are translating into enhanced interoperability and data exchange, increased patient empowerment and engagement, and improved clinical decision support.

As EHRs continue to evolve, it is essential for healthcare organizations to stay informed about these changes and adapt their practices accordingly. Patients and healthcare providers alike stand to benefit from EHR systems that are more efficient, secure, and supportive of high-quality care.