Physicians EHR, a Raleigh-based consulting firm that works with physicians on such issues as electronic medical records and communication strategies, has set up a new web site so healthcare professionals can discuss challenges they face.

Carolyn Hartley, the CEO of the firm and an author, said she came up with the idea while researching her 10th book for the American Medical Association.

“In the physician’s mind, the practice management system and the electronic health records are one system,” Hartley said in a statement. “Practices that hesitate to implement EHRs see them as an IT problem rather than the solution for unnecessary administrative costs and improved patient safety. Given the perceived capital outlay of electronic health records, it’s difficult for them to commit if they can’t see clinical or business benefits.”

Hartley said that a convergence of groups is driving technology adoption.

“This time, the federal government, consumers and provider organizations are all in agreement that administrative processes must be automated,” she said. “The docs I interviewed experienced immediate cost savings, but more importantly, increased relationships with patients and documented improved clinical outcomes.”

Her new book, “EHR Implementation: A Step by Step Guide for the Medical Practice”, was co-authored by Ed Jones. The book will be released in February 2005.

For the web site, see: www.physiciansehr.com