Informatics and operations--let's get integrated.
The widespread adoption of commercial electronic health records (EHRs) presents a significant challenge to the field of informatics. In their current form, EHRs function as a walled garden and prevent the integration of outside tools and services. This impedes the widespread adoption and diffusion of research interventions into the clinic. In most institutions, EHRs are supported by clinical operations staff who are largely separate from their informatics counterparts. This relationship needs to change. Research informatics and clinical operations need to work more closely on the implementation and configuration of EHRs to ensure that they are used to collect high-quality data for research and improvement at the point of care. At the same time, the informatics community needs to lobby commercial EHR vendors to open their systems and design new architectures that allow for the integration of external applications and services.
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