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Title:
ELECTRONIC HEALTH RECORD SYSTEM AND METHOD
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2013/061192
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
Provided are a system and method for efficiently creating patient health records with help of expert clinical decision support. The system and method also ensures the doctor's documentation and diagnosis comply with the government healthcare quality measures.

Inventors:
MOHAN, Kutty (#813, 3 rd Floor 2nd Main,C Block, AECS Layout, Kundalahalli, Bangalore 7, 56003, IN)
Application Number:
IB2012/055473
Publication Date:
May 02, 2013
Filing Date:
October 10, 2012
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
MOHAN, Kutty (#813, 3 rd Floor 2nd Main,C Block, AECS Layout, Kundalahalli, Bangalore 7, 56003, IN)
International Classes:
G06F19/00
Domestic Patent References:
WO2010057890A12010-05-27
WO1995024010A11995-09-08
Foreign References:
US20040172294A12004-09-02
US20040078229A12004-04-22
US20110010195A12011-01-13
Other References:
SCHNIPPER J L ET AL: "''Smart Forms'' in an Electronic Medical Record: Documentation-based Clinical Decision Support to Improve Disease Management", JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN MEDICAL INFORMATICS ASSOCIATION (JAMIA), HANLEY AND BELFUS, PHILADELPHIA, PA, US, vol. 15, no. 4, 1 July 2008 (2008-07-01), pages 513 - 523, XP022778913, ISSN: 1067-5027, [retrieved on 20080626], DOI: 10.1197/JAMIA.M2501
None
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Claims:
I claim:

1 . A method of making a patient health care record comprising;

(a) displaying, by a user interface device, a list of possible chief

complaints;

(b) selecting at least one chief complaint from the list on the user interface;

(c) displaying, by the user interface, a list of symptoms associated with the selected chief complaint;

(d) optionally identifying at least one of the symptoms as positive for the patient from among the displayed symptoms list on the user interface device;

(e) displaying, by the user interface, a findings screen that displays a list of possible findings associated with at least one positive symptom or the chief complaint, or a combination of the chief complaint and at least one positive symptom;

(f) displaying, by the user interface, an impressions screen that

displays a list of possible impressions based on at least one of a positive

symptom or a finding;

(g) selecting at least one possible impression on the user interface; (h) displaying, by the user interface device, a list of investigations associated with the selected impression;

(i) confirming or denying the impression on the user display device based on results of the investigation;

(j) optionally selecting a different impression on the user interface device if the impression is denied based on the investigation;

(k) displaying a plan and medication screen if the impression is

confirmed that displays a treatment; and

(I) generating and outputting a doctor note or invoice, wherein the user interface device sending a query related to at least one of the selected impressions to a quality metrics database to confirm that the treatment complies with the quality metric and whether additional tests are required to comply with the quality metric.

2. The method according to claim 1 , wherein the quality metric comprises Physician Quality Reporting System(PQRS) or Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set (HEDIS) requirements.

3. The method according to claim 1 , further comprising displaying a representative human body on the user display having selectable body systems, selecting a body system associated with the chief complaint on the user interface, and displaying the list of chief complaints associated with the selected body system.

4. The method according to claim 1 , wherein further comprising repeating the steps (a) through (i) until review of the patient is completed.

5. The method according to claim 1 , further comprising selecting confirmation or denial of the chief complaint on the user interface device.

6. The method according to claim 1 , further comprising selecting a new chief complaint and repeating steps (a) through (i) for the new chief complaint.

7. The method according to claim 2, further comprising determining by the user interface device whether any PQRS/HEDIS procedures are required for each impression, and the user interface device displaying any required PQRS/ HEDIS procedures for each impression.

8. The method according to claim 2, further comprising updating the PQRS/HEDIS requirements database in a requirements database connected to a network, and the user interface device being connected to the network.

9. The method according to claim 8, wherein the user interface device sends a query related to the impression is via an Internet protocol-based network to the requirements database.

10. The method according to claim 2, further comprising generating an invoice including required supporting notes to comply with PQRS/HEDIS requirements for payment and forwarding the invoice to an insurance carrier.

1 1 . The method according to claim 1 , further comprising generati ng a patient visit form providing a summary of a current office visit or a patient health summary report providing a summary of the patient's existing conditions, medications and vitals.

12. The method according to claim 1 , further inputting patient information to a patients records database using the user interface device.

13. The method according to claim 2, wherein the PQRS/HEDIS requirements database is located at a HIPAA compliant data center with access to the internet and the user interface device is located at a doctor's office, the method further comprising the user interface device logging onto a webpage and accessing the PQRS/HEDIS requirements database via an Internet protocol-based network.

14. The method according to claim 1 , wherein the user interface device comprises a touch screen, the method further comprising selecting at least one of a chief complaint, a symptom, a finding, or an impression using the touch screen during an examination of the patient.

15. The method according to claim 14, wherein the user interface device further comprises a camera, the method further comprising taking a picture or video of a patient symptom or condition and storing the picture in a patient records database stored on a data storage unit.

16. The method according to claim 1 , further comprising the user interface device displaying a medical alert in response to at least one of a positive symptom, a finding, or an impression.

17. The method according to claim 1 , further comprising using a location device to determine the location of the user interface device and modify the information displayed on the user interface based on the location of the user interface device.

18. The method according to claim 1 , further comprising displaying only doctor desired information on the user interface device by activating or deactivating the elements in the list.

19. The method according to claim 1 , further comprising identifying related information displayed on the doctor note by different colors.

20. An apparatus for making a patient health care record and invoice comprising:

a cloud based server connected to a network, the cloud based server being in communication with or comprising at least one non-volatile memory, a database stored in the non-volatile memory, the database comprising a patient records database, a clinical decision support database, and a quality metric requirements database;

a user interface device in communication with the cloud based server via the network;

a chief complaint software module for displaying a list of chief complaints, wherein the chief complaint software module is stored in the non-volatile memory, and the chief complaint software module allows a user to select at least one chief complaint of a patient from among the list of chief complaints;

a symptoms software module for displaying a list of symptoms associated with a selected chief complaint, wherein the symptoms software module is stored in the non-volatile memory, and the symptom software module allows a user to optionally identify each symptom as positive via the user interface device;

a findings software module for displaying a list of possible findings associated with at least one positive symptom or the chief complaint, or a combination of the chief complaint and at least positive symptom, wherein the findings software module is stored in the non-volatile memory;

an impressions software module for displaying a list of possible impressions based on at least one of a positive symptom or a finding, wherein the impressions software module is stored on the non-volatile memory, and the impressions software module allows a user to select a possible impression via the user interface device; an investigations software module for displaying a list of investigations associated with a possible impression, wherein the investigations software module is stored on the non-volatile memory, and wherein the impressions software module allows a user to confirm or deny a possible impression based on an outcome of an investigation;

a plan and medication module for displaying a treatment associated with a confirmed impression, wherein the plan and medication module is stored on the non-volatile memory;

a query software module for sending a query to the at least one database to retrieve information from the database, the query software constructed for sending a query to the quality metric requirements database including regarding requirements in connection with the at least one selected impression via the user interface device to confirm that the treatment complies with the quality metric and whether additional tests are required to comply with the quality metrics, wherein the query software module is stored on non- volatile memory; and

an invoice module for creating a patient health care record and, if an impression is confirmed, an invoice, wherein the invoice and patient health care record are saved to the patient records database.

21 . The apparatus according to claim 20, wherein the quality metric comprises Physician Quality Reporting System(PQRS) or Healthcare Effectiveness Data and information Set (HEDIS) requirements.

22. The apparatus according to claim 20, wherein the chief complaint software module is further configured to display representative human body on the user display having selectable body systems, that allows a user to select a body system associated with the chief complaint on the user interface, and the chief complaint software module displaying the list of chief complaints associated with the selected body system.

23. The apparatus according to claim 20, further comprising a medical alert module for displaying a medical alert on the user interface device in response to at least one of a positive symptom, a finding or an impression.

24. The apparatus according to claim 20, wherein the user interface comprises a

GPS location system and the system is constructed to modify information displayed on the user interface device based on the GPS location of the user interface device.

25. The apparatus according to claim 20, wherein the system is configured to identify displayed information by different colors.

26. The invention of claim 1 formed of a computer program product, comprising a computer usable medium having a computer readable program code embodied therein, wherein the computer readable program code being adapted to be executed to implement the method for providing an electronic health care record.

Description:
[0001] ELECTRONIC HEALTH RECORD SYSTEM AND METHOD

[0002] This application claims priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application Serial Nos. 61/552,996, filed 28 October 201 1 ; 61/667,509, filed 3 July 2012; and 61/677,697, filed 31 July 2012, the complete disclosures of which are incorporated herein by reference.

[0003] FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0004] The invention relates to systems and methods for efficiently creating patient health

records with help of expert clinical decision support. The methods and systems ensure that the doctor's documentation and diagnosis comply with the government healthcare quality measures.

[0005] BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0006] There are many conventional electronic health record (EHR) systems. A simple

clinical decision support is the simplest form of clinical decision support, which alerts against drug-drug, and drug-allergy prescribing errors. There are EHR systems having quality metrics. For example, in the United States, there are two main quality metrics in use: (1 ) PQRS (Physicians Quality Reporting System), which is overseen by CMS (the Centre for Medicare and Medicaid Services), and (2) HEDIS

(Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set), which is developed by the

NCQA (National Committee for Quality Assurance). HEDIS is an initiative by NCQA to develop, collect and standardize measures of health plan performances. The data is reported publicly by NCQA. An EHR system that incorporates these measures can be classified under this category.

[0007] For example, a "quality metric" would be something like "diabetic patients should

have a glycohemoglobin blood test done within the past year (or more often)." An

EHR system should be able to present to the clinician an alert in the individual patient record stating "this patient is a diabetic, but has not had a glycohemoglobin done within the past year - he/she is due for one." Alternatively, the EHR system should

l be able to generate a report, such as a list of all patients (using the same example) who are diabetics but have not had a glycohemoglobin done within the past year.

[0008] Diagnosis support EHR systems are complex systems designed to assist doctors in diagnosing the problem. For example, given a patient with "symptom set x" and with "lab test results y," give me the likely diagnoses, and recommended further testing to distinguish between them. Existing decision support systems with diagnosis support are complex and do not fit well with the clinical workflow. Furthermore, these conventional EHR are difficult to use and consume more time to use than paper systems.

[0009] CMS has become more stringent in regards to paying for patient health care claims.

With this change, it is now required that every patient diagnosis be supported by complete notation of the existing conditions (also referred to as symptoms) of each patient within the progress notes. Without proper notation in the correct sections of the doctor's notes for any existing diagnosis, CMS views that diagnosis as invalid/unsupported and will not provide funding for that condition. This leaves the doctor and patient with insufficient funds from CMS to pay for their true

physical/mental conditions, and therefore, leaving the doctor without the financial means to provide the best care possible for their patients. Without proper documentation, there is insufficient funding to provide proper patient care.

[0010] Existing EHR systems are complex and inefficient at the point of care and doctors find it difficult to enter data into these systems. Moreover, documenting patient condition and diagnosis information is usually done after assessing the patient.

[001 1 ] SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0012] An objective of the invention is to automatically document the diagnosis by

integrating diagnosis support to the EHR system.

[0013] Another objective of the invention is to provide an EHR system that minimizes errors in coding and delays in submission of claims.

[0014] Another objective of the invention is to provide an EHR system that ensures the doctor's documentation and treatment comply with quality metrics set forth by the government.

[0015] A further objective of the invention is to provide an EHR system that is

efficient and less time consuming than conventional EHR systems.

[0016] Another objective of the invention is to provide an EHR system that reduces the chance of an improper diagnosis, missed diagnosis, improper treatment, and/or errors in instructions provided to patients.

[0017] Another objective of the invention is to provide an EHR system in which the doctor can enter information during the patient examination.

[0018] The above objectives and other objectives are obtained by a method of making

a patient health care record comprising;

(a) displaying, by a user interface device, a list of possible chief complaints;

(b) selecting at least one chief complaint from the list on the user interface;

(c) displaying, by the user interface, a list of symptoms associated with the selected chief complaint;

(d) optionally identifying at least one of the symptoms as positive for the patient from among the displayed symptoms list on the user interface device;

(e) displaying, by the user interface, a findings screen that displays a list of possible findings associated with at least one positive symptom or the chief complaint, or a combination of the chief complaint and at least one positive symptom;

(f) displaying, by the user interface, an impressions screen that displays a list of possible impressions based on at least one of a positive

symptom or a finding;

(g) selecting at least one possible impression on the user interface; (h) displaying, by the user interface device, a list of investigations associated with the selected impression;

(i) confirming or denying the impression on the user display device based on results of the investigation;

(j) optionally selecting a different impression on the user interface device if the impression is denied based on the investigation;

(k) displaying a plan and medication screen if the impression is

confirmed that displays a treatment; and

(I) generating and outputting a doctor note or invoice, wherein the user interface device sending a query related to at least one of the selected impressions to a quality metric requirements database to confirm that the treatment complies with the quality metric and whether additional tests are required to comply with the quality metric. The above objectives are further obtained by an apparatus for making a patient health care record and invoice comprising:

a cloud based server connected to a network, the cloud based server being in communication with or comprising at least one non-volatile memory, a database stored in the non-volatile memory, the database comprising a patient records database, a clinical decision support database, and a quality metric requirements database;

a user interface device in communication with the cloud based server via the network; a chief complaint software module for displaying a list of chief complaints, wherein the chief complaint software module is stored in the non- volatile memory, and the chief complaint software module allows a user to select at least one chief complaint of a patient from among the list of chief complaints;

a symptoms software module for displaying a list of symptoms associated with a selected chief complaint, wherein the symptoms software module is stored in the non-volatile memory, and the symptom software module allows a user to optionally identify each symptom as positive via the user interface device;

a findings software module for displaying a list of possible findings associated with at least one positive symptom or the chief complaint, or a combination of the chief complaint and at least one positive symptom, wherein the findings software module is stored in the non-volatile memory;

an impressions software module for displaying a list of possible impressions based on at least one of a positive symptom or a finding, wherein the impressions software module is stored on the non-volatile memory, and the impressions software module allows a user to select a possible impression via the user interface device; an investigations software module for displaying a list of investigations associated with a possible impression, wherein the investigations software module is stored on the non-volatile memory, and wherein the impressions software module allows a user to confirm or deny a possible impression based on an outcome of an investigation;

a plan and medication module for displaying a treatment associated with a confirmed impression, wherein the plan and medication module is stored on the non-volatile memory;

a query software module for sending a query to the database to retrieve information from the database, the query software constructed for sending a query to the quality metric requirements database including regarding requirements in connection with the at least one selected impression via the user interface device to confirm that the treatment complies with the quality metric and whether

additional tests are required to comply with the quality metrics, wherein the query software module is stored on non- volatile memory; and

an invoice module for creating a patient health care record and, if an impression is confirmed, an invoice, wherein the invoice and patient health care record are saved to the patient records database.

[0020] The above objectives are further obtained by having the EHR methods described

herein embodied in a computer program product, comprising a computer usable medium having a computer readable program code embodied therein, wherein the computer readable program code being adapted to be executed to implement the methods for providing an EHR.

[0021 ] BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0022] Fig. 1 illustrates a perspective view of the components of an EHR system in accordance with the present invention;

[0023] Fig. 2A is a flow diagram for the diagnosis flow for the present invention;

[0024] Fig. 2B is a flow diagram for the chronic flow for the present invention;

[0025] Fig. 3A illustrates a screen-shot view of the chief complaints in accordance with the present invention;

[0026] Fig. 3B illustrates a screen-shot view of the symptoms a patient can have based on the patient's Chief Complaints in accordance with the present invention;

[0027] Fig. 3C illustrates a screen-shot view of the clinical findings in accordance

with the present invention;

[0028] Fig. 3D illustrates a screen-shot view of the possible impressions based on at least one of a positive symptom or a finding in accordance with the present invention;

[0029] Fig. 3E illustrates a screen-shot view of the investigation in accordance with the

present invention;

[0030] Fig. 3F illustrates a screen-shot view of the plan and medication in accordance with the present invention;

[0031 ] Fig. 3G illustrates a screen-shot view of a patient summary in accordance with the present invention;

[0032] Fig. 3H illustrates a screen-shot of a doctor's note;

[0033] Fig. 3I illustrates a screen-shot view of the clinical findings in pictorial

representation in accordance with the present invention;

[0034] Fig. 4 illustrates a screen-shot view of the chronic section in accordance

with the present invention;

[0035] Fig.5 is a functional block diagram illustrating an exemplary mobile user interface device 120;

[0036] Fig. 6 is a screen-shot of a representative human body showing selectable

body systems; and

[0037] Figs. 7A-7B illustrate the deactivate and activate features of the EHR system. [0038] DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE SYSTEM

[0039] In the following description, for purposes of explanation and not limitation, specific details are set forth, such as particular networks, communication systems, computers, terminals, devices, components, techniques, data and network protocols, software products and systems, operating systems, development interfaces, hardware, etc. in order to provide a thorough understanding of the present invention.

[0040] However, it will be apparent to one skilled in the art that the present invention can be practiced in other embodiments that depart from these specific details. Detailed descriptions of well-known networks, communication systems, computers, terminals, devices, components, techniques, data and network protocols, software products and systems, operating systems, development interfaces, and hardware are omitted so as not to obscure the description.

[0041 ] The EHR system will now be explained with reference to the attached non- Limiting Figures.

[0042] Fig. 1 describes an EHR system 100 for making a patient health care record and CMS compliant invoice. The system 100 comprises a plurality of user interface devices 120 and a main server 150 interconnected via a communication network 140. A component of the system 100 is connected to an external Insurance Provider 160. The system 100 can be set up in a hospital, clinic or similar setting. The user, for example a receptionist, doctor, nurse, or other personnel, or the patient,

communicates with the system 100 using the user interface device 120.

[0043] Various networks 140 may be implemented in accordance with embodiments of the invention, including a wired or wireless local area network (LAN) and a wide area network (WAN), wireless personal area network (PAN) and other types of networks. When used in a LAN networking environment, computers may be connected to the LAN through a network interface or adapter. When used in a WAN networking environment, computers typically include a modem or other communication mechanism. Modems may be internal or external, and may be connected to the system bus via the user-input interface, or other appropriate mechanism. Computers may be connected over the Internet, an Intranet, Extranet, Ethernet, or any other system that provides communications. Some suitable communications protocols may include TCP/IP, UDP, OSI, Ethernet, WAP, IEEE 802.1 1 , Bluetooth, Zigbee, IrDa or any other desired protocol. Furthermore, components of the system may communicate through a combination of wired or wireless paths.

[0044] The EHR system can be accessed via any user interface device 120 that is capable of connecting to the main server 150. The user interface device 120 comprises a display, and preferably a touch screen display. The user interface device 120 also preferably comprises a camera for taking pictures and/or video of patients. The user interface device 120 also preferably includes a microphone for inputting sound, such as verbal commands. In this manner, the doctor can use a speech to text program on the user interface device 120 to enter information by verbal commands.

[0045] An exemplary user interface device 120 contains a web browser or similar program, allowing in some embodiments for a secure SSL connection, and able to display HTML and CSS. This includes user interface devices 120 such as tablets, iPads, Mac OS computers, Windows computers, e-readers, and mobile user devices such as the iPhone, Android, and Windows Phone. Preferably, the user interface device 120 is a tablet. The user interface devices 120, preferably support the ability to play video. The user interface devices 120 can connect to the server via the internet and/or wirelessly, such as through a mobile telephone network 140, and/or any other suitable medium. User interface devices 120 are preferably able to communicate to the main server 150 so that content can be started on one user interface device 120 and later continued on a separate user interface device 120. The user interface device 120 preferably includes an I/O interface 125 that allows a user to interact with the system 100. The I/O interface 125 may include any hardware, software, or combination of hardware and software.

[0046] Referring to Fig. 5, exemplary CPU 504 of the user interface device 120 can be

implemented as a conventional microprocessor, application specific integrated circuit (ASIC), digital signal processor (DSP), programmable gate array (PGA), or the like. The CPU 504 executes the instructions that are stored in order to process data. The set of instructions may include various instructions that perform a particular task or tasks, such as those shown in the appended flowcharts. Such a set of instructions for performing a particular task may be characterized as a program, software program, software, engine, module, component, mechanism, or tool. The memory 506 may include random access memory (RAM), ready-only memory (ROM), programmable memory, flash memory, and the like. The memory, 506 include application programs, OS, application data etc. The exemplary computing device 120 also includes a network module 510 connected to an antenna 512 to communicate with rest of the system 100.

[0047] A preferred user interface device 120 is an Apple iPad or similar competing touch screen tablet. The doctor can also add notes by typing in the words or using speech recognition software. Pictures and/or videos of the affected areas can be taken by the user interface device 120 and uploaded to a patient records database.

[0048] The main server 150 described herein can include one or more computer systems directly connected to one another and/or connected over the network 140. Each computer system includes a processor, non-volatile memory, user input and user output mechanisms, a network interface, and executable program code (software) comprising computer executable instructions stored in non-transitory tangible memory that executes to control the operation of the main server 150. Similarly, the processors functional components formed of one or more modules of program code executing on one or more computers. Various commercially available computer systems and operating system software can be used to implement the hardware and software. The components of each server can be co-located or distributed. In addition, all or portions of the same software and/or hardware can be used to implement two or more of the functional servers (or processors) shown. The main server 150 can run any desired operating system, such as Windows, Mac OS X, Solaris or any other server based operating systems. Other embodiments can include different functional components. In addition, the present invention is not limited to a particular

environment or main server 150 configuration. Preferably, the main server 150 is a cloud based computer system.

[0049] The main server 150 preferably includes a web server and the query processing

unit. The web server receives the user requests and sends it to the query

processing unit. The query processing unit processes the request and responds back to the user interface device 120 via the web server. The query processing unit fetches data from the database server if additional information is needed for processing the request. [0050] A database is stored in the non-volatile memory. The term "database" includes a single database and a plurality of separate databases. The main server 150 can comprise the non-volatile memory or the main server 150 can be in communication with the non-volatile memory storing the database. The database can be stored at different locations. The database can comprise a clinical decision support database, an updatable quality metric requirements database, a patient records database, drug interaction database, and any other desired information stored in non-volatile memory. Examples of other desired information stored in the database includes health requirements from governments other than the U.S, health requirements established by insurance companies, employers, or other groups, and/or

requirements provided by drug or medical device companies. If desired, the databases can be organized as a collection of tables. Examples of main tables for the present EHR system include:

1. Clinical decision support table containing the chief

complaints and its associated symptoms, findings, impressions, investigations, and treatment plans.

2. Quality metrics requirements table.

3. Patient records table.

[0051 ] The main server 150 can include a plurality of individual computer systems directly connected and/or connected over network 140. Software program modules and data stored in the non-volatile memory the main server 150 may be arranged in logical collections of related information on a plurality of computer systems having associated non-volatile memories. The software and data may be stored using any data structures known in the art including files, arrays, linked lists, relational database tables and the like.

[0052] In a preferred system, the main server 150 is maintained at a secure location, such as a US Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliant data center with access to the internet. [0053] The system 100 can send and receive data from any desire entity, such as labs, radiology departments, pharmacy, speciality hospitals and health insurance

companies. Health information exchange to these disparate systems can be achieved using, for example, the HL7 standard.

[0054] The various stages of the doctor's examination of the patient are classified into Chief Complaints, Symptoms, Findings, Impressions, Investigations, and Plan/Medications. Fig. 2 illustrates a method 200 performed by the EHR system 100 (illustrated in Fig. 1 ). The method 200 receives input from the doctor user through the user interface device 120 throughout the doctor's examination of the patient.

[0055] The patient fixes an appointment with the receptionist usually over the telephone.

The patient is entered into the patient records database on the main server 150.

[0056] In the first block 202, the main server 150 authenticates the doctor user's login

credentials. The doctor selects one entry from the list of patients to be examined for the day in block 204.

[0057] If the visit is the patient's first time, the patient or office personnel can enter the

patient's personal information into the patient record database using user interface device 120, such as name, address, age, health insurance, and any other information. Alternatively, the patient can have their personal information, and other information, such as medical history, on a memory media, such as an RFID card, flash memory, USB device, hard drive, disc, or other memory device, transferred to the patient records database. The patient's information can also be downloaded over the network 140 from another memory connected to the network 140.

[0058] The nurse, or other user, can conduct the initial patient examination and enter the patient's vitals (weight, height etc) into a patient chart in patient record database using the user interface device 120. The values of vital signs can be highlighted on the display of the user interface device 120, such as if any value is outside of the normal range. The highlighting can be any desired color. [0059] The patient can present at least one Chief Complaint (CC) to the doctor or doctor's personnel, such as a nurse, all referred to as "users". The user then selects the patient's chief complaint(s) from a chief complaints list. The nurse saves the patient chart and requests the doctor to examine the patient.

[0060] Chief complaints are the patient's initial comments to a doctor or nurse describing a condition. For example, a patient may come to the clinic complaining of chest pain. The chief complaint is the initial input to the user display device 120 for starting the patient examination. The EHR system retrieves from the clinical decision support database the relevant information related to the reported chief complaint. The chief complaints can also be referred to as the "Presenting Symptom" by the patient.

[0061 ] For example, a patient may initially complain of one chief complaint, at the beginning of the physical examination. The doctor can use the user interface device 120 to enter the chief complaint. The EHR system will query clinical decision support database for the "associated symptoms" for establishing an identity of an illness.

When a patient complaints chest pain as the chief complaint, the EHR system will display any associated symptoms on the user interface device so the doctor can question the patient whether they have any of the symptoms associated with chest pain, such as coughing, palpitations, shortness of breath, etc. The EHR system retrieves the "associated symptoms" from the clinical decision support database for the selected chief complaint.

[0062] The doctor can proceed with the same selected chief complaint or change the chief complaint, such as in a decision block 206, if desired. If the decision in the decision block 206 is "YES", the doctor proceeds to the next stage with the current selection. When the decision in the decision block 206 is "NO", the doctor can change the chief complaint in block 208.

[0063] Chief complaints can be categorized as desired by text lists or visually in the EHR

system 100. If the chief complaints are categorized in text lists, the user can select chest pain from a written list of chief complaints.

[0064] Alternatively, as shown in Fig. 6, the chief complaints can be categorized into plurality of body systems, such as 16 systems. For example, a representative picture of the human body can be shown on the screen showing the different body systems. If the chief complaint is chest pain, the user can touch the body system associated with chest pain, which will then display a list of chief complaints. An exemplary list of 16 body systems is as follows:

1 . General

2. HEENT

3. Neck

4. Chest

5. Breast

6. Per Abdomen

7. Per Rectal

8. Reproductive

9. Urology

10. Musculoskeletal

1 1. Dermatology

12. Vascular

13. Endocrinology

14. Central Nervous System

15. Psychology

16. Hematology

[0065] The body systems can be divided into any group as desired.

[0066] The system 100 advances to block 210, where a list of possible symptoms are

displayed that are associated with the selected chief complaint. The doctor review the displayed symptoms and checks each whether the patient has the symptom, positive, or the patient does not have the symptom, negative. If a symptom present in the patient is not present in the list displayed, the doctor can select other and will be presented with a screen where the additional symptom can be entered by the doctor, such as either by typing or speech recognition software.

[0067] The doctor is presented with a findings screen in block 212 with the associated

possible findings for the positive symptoms selected in block 210. The possible findings can also be based on the chief complaint entered into the system. For example, if there are no positive symptoms uncovered during examination, then the doctor can skip the symptoms screen and go to the findings screen, and the findings screen can be based on the chief complaint. When both the chief complaint and positive symptoms are entered, the system can prioritize the most relevant possible findings based on a combination of the chief complaint and positive symptoms selected. Findings can be something measured or observed by a doctor, for example during the patient examination that provides evidence. Findings can have no meaning to the patient, and can even go unnoticed. Findings may be meaningful and significant to the doctor in assisting the diagnosis of medical condition(s) responsible for the patient's symptoms. Findings can be distinguished from symptoms as follows. Both findings and symptoms are something abnormal, relevant to a potential medical condition, but a symptom is experienced and reported by the patient, while a finding is discovered by the doctor during examination.

[0068] The system 100, displays a list of possible impressions based on the entered

symptoms and/or findings and prompts the doctor to select an Impression in block 214. The doctor can select an impression based on a finding or positive symptom.

[0069] Impressions include the doctor's suspected diagnosis, confirmed diagnosis, a

condition, and/or assessment of a condition. An impression is a possible cause of the chief complaint and/or positive symptom. Impressions can be based on a positive symptom and/or a clinical finding. Possible impressions are preferably selected based on the chief complaint, positive symptoms and/or clinical findings. Impressions can be diseases, ailments, injuries, etc.

[0070] Medical alerts, shown in block 251 , can be generated by the system 100 at any

time during the examination and displayed on the user interface device 120. Medical alerts can include, for example, common and rare impressions in which delay in diagnosis would cause permanent disability or death. Preferably, the medical alerts are based on symptoms, findings or impressions, as shown in Fig. 2A.

[0071 ] The EHR system 100, advances to block 216, and prompts the doctor to select lab investigations to verify the impression, if any are required. Examples of lab investigations include blood tests, X-ray, MRI, EKG, or any other desired test procedure.

[0072] The investigation can also be used to confirm or deny a condition. For example if a selected possible impression has multiple possible conditions, the possible conditions can be confirmed or denied using the investigation.

[0073] After the investigations are over, the patient comes to the doctor with the lab/test results. The doctor verifies in decision block 218 the results with the impression selected in block 214. If the decision in the decision block 218 is "YES", the doctor proceeds to the planning and medication in block 222. When the decision in the decision block 218 is "NO", the doctor can change the impression in block 220 before proceeding to block 222. The planning and medication includes treatment suggested for the patient's confirmed impression. Based on the information from previous steps, the doctor formulates a plan that may include specialist consultation, drug prescription, diet, exercise, or any other desired treatment.

[0074] The EHR system 100 lists all the treatment(s) related to the selected impression in block 222. The list in block 222 also contains the quality measures that need to be adhered for a particular impression, if any, and whether any further tests are required to comply with the quality metric. The doctor is also alerted with the patient allergies while prescribing the drugs in planning and medication block 222, or any undesired drug interactions.

[0075] In block 224, the system 100 generates a patient summary containing the

selections the doctor made during the various stages of the examination. At any stage of the examination, the doctor can go back to the previous step and change the selection. The doctor can also add comments, if needed in the patient

summary.

[0076] In block 226, a doctor note, receipt and claim are created once the doctor verifies the patient summary. All positive and negative symptoms can be generated in the doctor note. All positive and negative findings can be generated in the doctor note.

[0077] The receipt contains information such as charge for the consultation, co-pay, the

mode of payment, etc. The doctor needn't keep track of the procedure codes as the codes are automatically selected based on the plan and medication selected by the doctor.

[0078] A claim can then be directly send to the insurance provider 160 for claim processing.

The patient's data is stored in a patient database residing on the main server 150. The doctor can access all the patient information in a dashboard view display on the user interface device 120. Once the doctor completes examination of the patient, the patient database is updated with the new examination results.

[0079] For a follow up visit, the doctor can re-examine the patient on the condition(s). The system 100 prompts the doctor to close the patient record if the patient is cured or continue examination if the patient has not yet recovered.

[0080] The doctor can also be provided with critical information on the user display device 120, such as the patient's past medical/surgical history, social history and the family history for diagnosis that are stored in the patients record database. Past

medical/surgical history can include information such as major illnesses, any previous surgery/operations, any current ongoing illness etc. The patient's social history can indicate living arrangements, occupation, marital status, drug use, etc. The patient's family history can include information about diseases or disorders from which the direct blood relatives of the patient have suffered. [0081 ] Different colors can be used to categorize any desired groups of information displayed on the doctor note. Fig. 3H shows an example of the colouring feature. The system 100 assigns a colour to a particular chronic condition and all the related information is assigned the same colour. For example, in a doctor's note, all information related to diabetes mellitus can be coloured green (text in solid box) and those of hyperlipidemia (cholesterol) are coloured red (text in dotted box).

[0082] As shown in Fig. 3I, the list of findings can also be represented with pictures of the condition and the doctor can select the picture that best describes the patient condition. When the relevant picture describing the condition is selected, the system 100 suggests the associated impression(s) and automatically generates a text description for the findings in the doctor note . The pictures are mapped to a symptom description in the database.

[0083] As shown in Figs. 7A-7B, preferably, the system 100 has an activate and deactivate option. The system 100 can be configured so that each doctor can have a personal profile. The doctor can select any desired feature of the system 100 and can customize the information displayed. Fig. 7A, shows an edit button 71 0 in the Chief Complaints Screen. The doctor can go to edit button 710 and deactivate the options the doctor believes are irrelevant or rare for the doctor's practice. As shown in Fig.7B, the doctor removes "Chronic Shortness of Breath" from the list by crossing the checkbox 730. The doctor ensures that all the options the doctor wants to be activated are remained checked as in checkbox 720. The action can be saved by clicking the save button 740.

[0084] As another example, if the doctor desires specific drugs to treat a patient condition, only the doctor's desired drugs will be displayed on the user interface device 120 in the patient's treatment plan when the doctor's profile is edited. When the doctor performs the edit option, all possible drugs used to treat the patient's condition will be displayed on the user interface device 120 and the doctor can deactivate the undesired drugs. As another example, if the patient has multiple chronic conditions, the doctor can edit the patient's record so that the patient's record only shows information relating to a specific chronic condition the doctor is examining at that time on the user interface device 120. When activated, all of the patient's information is displayed on the user interface device 120. A further example is if questions are being repeated by the system that the doctor desires to ignore, the undesired options can be removed during, and when activated the questions will be present.

[0085] The system 100 preferably includes a location device to determine the location of the patient or user interface device. The location device is preferably a GPS system present in the user interface device to determine the location of the user interface device 120. The main server 150 can contain location based information including, for example, location based impressions, symptoms, drugs, treatments, insurance carriers, or any other desired location based information. The user interface device 120 having a GPS can display the location based information.

[0086] To enhance the usability of the software, the checklist displayed is preferably minimal and most relevant to the patient under examination. The system can prioritize the list based on age, sex, time of the year, or any other desired information. Geographical or 'locational' factors can influence the outcome while examining a patient. The system can also provide location based clinical decision support. The system can prioritize the check list based on the most common disease/condition based on the GPS location. The system can display the prioritized data on top of the check list and brings down the rare cases. This prioritization helps the doctor in easily selecting the required information and saves valuable time.

[0087] For example: A disease X is common to a particular region Y. A patient comes to the clinic with chief complaints leading to X. Since the doctor is examining the patient at Y, the system automatically reorders the impression list. X comes on top of the list allowing the doctor to select X as a probable diagnosis.

[0088] Chronic Flow [0089] Fig. 2B is a flow diagram illustrating the method 240 performed by system 100 illustrated in Fig. 1 . The method 240 shows the flow of the patient examination or diagnosis for a chronic condition for an existing patient.

[0090] The system 100 displays all the chronic conditions of the patient as shown in Fig. 4.

The doctor selects from a list the chronic conditions to be reviewed in block 242. The doctor then analyzes the lab results in block 244 and continues the examination. The doctor then updates the symptoms in block 246 and findings in block 248 if any changes are found. The system 100, prompts the doctor to change the impression for the patient's condition in block 250. In block 252, the system 100 prompts the doctor to select lab investigations to analyze the severity of the chronic condition and the doctor updates the Plan and Medication accordingly in block 254.The medical alerts in block 253 provide notification during the different stages of examination. The patient summary in block 256 displays the selection made by the doctor and once the selections are confirmed a doctor note and receipt is generated in block 258.

[0091 ] Examples of applying the EHR System 100 to Specific Patient Problems. [0092] Example 1

[0093] As an example, consider a 47 year old male patient complaining of "coughing up

blood" as the chief complaint. The patient comes into the clinic and presents the chief complaint to the nurse. The nurse measures the vitals and enters the information into the system 100 using the user interface device 120. The nurse then selects

"coughing up blood" from the chief complaints screen on the user interface device 120. A screenshot shown on the display of the user interface device 120 illustrating the chief complaints pertaining to the body system "chest" is provided in Fig. 3A.

[0094] The Doctor navigates to the symptoms screen and the system 100 presents a list of causes related to coughing up blood, which is retrieved from the clinical decision support database. The list is displayed as a checklist for assisting the doctor in recording all the necessary information in each step. The checklist is sorted from most likely to least likely based on age, sex, medical and surgical history, etc. If the system does not show the desired item on the check list, the doctor can retrieve additional items from the clinical decision support database. If the doctor still fails to find the item, the doctor can either type or speak the information and have it appear in the list.

[0095] The first step in the examination of the patient can be to obtain a complete history and findings. In this patient, the doctor enquires about any additional symptoms present along with coughing up blood, and other information, referred to as findings.

[0096] The patient replies that:

"He has been exposed to someone with tuberculosis;

Has travelled abroad to India within 6 months; and Has weight loss."

[0097] The doctor enters the findings. A screenshot shown on the display of the user

interface device 120 illustrating the symptoms section is provided in Fig. 3B. From this history and symptomatology, the doctor now has tuberculosis on top of his list of possible impressions.

[0098] The doctor then proceeds to examine the patient. On examination of the respiratory system, he notes "inspiratory rales", a finding consistent with a diagnosis of tuberculosis. The doctor selects "inspiratory rales and shows involvement" in clinical findings. A screenshot shown on display of the user interface device 120 illustrating the clinical findings section is provided in Fig. 3C.

[0099] The Impression screen displays a list of possible impressions based on the findings and/or symptoms. Based on the findings and positive symptoms, the doctor selects Tuberculosis. A screenshot shown on the display of the user interface device 120 illustrating the impression section is provided in Fig. 3D.

[0100] The doctor now confirms or denies the impression through investigations. The lab tests required to confirm tuberculosis include CBC with differential, ESR and sputum staining for acid fast bacilli (AFB). A chest X-ray is also necessary to detect tuberculosis lesions in the lungs. The doctor selects from the investigations screen the tests needed to confirm Tuberculosis. A screenshot shown on the display of the user interface device 120 illustrating the Lab investigations is provided in Fig. 3E. The patient is referred to a lab for these tests. The doctor saves the patient chart and generates a doctor note for the first visit.

[0101 ] During the second visit, the doctor reopens the patient chart, lab results are entered into the patient record database, confirming the presence of acid fast bacilli in the sputum and chest X-rays showing cavitary lesions in the lungs, the doctor confirms the diagnosis of tuberculosis and arranges for a pulmonary consult. The doctor selects pulmonary consult from plan and medications. A screenshot shown on the display of the user interface device 120 illustrating the plan and medications is provided in Fig. 3F.

[0102] If the patient has a chronic condition, the doctor can go to the chronic section and change the plan and medication if there is any change in patient's chronic condition. In this example the doctor finds that the patient has diabetes and cholesterol and asks him to continue his medications.

[0103] The patient summary screen lists the selections made by the doctor in each step of the examination before generating the doctor note. The doctor can change his selections if needed by navigating back to the respective screens.

[0104] A screenshot shown on the display of the user interface device 120 illustrating the patient summary screen is provided in Fig. 3G. The patient summary screen also provides information regarding his/her chronic conditions that are active. The patient summary also lists the HEDIS/PQRS quality measures, which alert physicians of necessary tests, procedures to be performed for that patient. [0105] In Fig. 3G, the HEDIS measures lists HbAl c test and LDL screening. As a HEDIS measure, it is recommended that individuals between 18 and 75 years old with diabetes be tested for LDL-C levels at least once a year.

[0106] Once the doctor validates the information in the patient summary section he/she

confirms the selections and the system generates the doctor note. The doctor note generated is in the form of a SOAP note (Subjective, Objective, Assessment and Plan) and populated based on the selections in each step of the patient examination. The doctor can also change the doctor note format to the format of his/her choice. A screenshot shown on the display of the user interface device 120 illustrating the Doctor Note Screen is provided in Fig. 3H.

[0107] The chief Complaints and the Symptoms form the Subjective part of the SOAP Note.

Long description statements associated with the selected Chief Complaints and the Symptoms will be used to create the sentence for the Subjective section. The Findings constitutes the objective part. All positive and negative findings are listed in the objective section. The Assessment section contains the Impression. The final part of the SOAP note contains the Investigations, Plan and Medication.

[0108] A HCFA 1500 form (Now CMS 1500), the official standard form used by doctors when submitting bills/claims for reimbursement to insurance companies, can also be generated automatically by the system and outputted in any desired form, such as printed, displayed, copied to a computer disk, hard drive, flash memory, or other storage device in any desired electronic format.

[0109] Example 2

[01 10] The patient comes to the doctor with "blood in urine" as the chief complaint. The

doctor selects blood in urine as the chief complaint on the user interface.

Alternatively, the doctor can select the body system associated with blood in urine, which will then display a list of possible chief complaints from which the doctor can select blood in urine. [01 1 1 ] The user interface displays the following possible symptoms associated with the selected chief complaint:

1 . Burning on urination;

2. Frank blood or dark colored urine;

3. Back pain;

4. Fever and chills;

5. Painless;

6. Weight loss; and

7. Pain which travels downward.

[01 12] The doctor reviews each of the listed symptoms and checks each symptom as positive (present in patient) or negative (not present in patient) in the clinical findings:

1 . Fever;

2. Weight loss; and

3. Tenderness in costo-vertebral angle.

[01 13] A list of possible impressions is then displayed on the user interface device:

1 . Hematuria;

2. Renal Calculi;

3. Urinary tract infection;

4. Bladder tumor;

5. Kidney tumor; and

6. Trauma to kidney.

[01 14] The doctor selects a possible impression and then an investigation is

displayed with required labs and/or X-rays:

1 . CBC;

2. Urine analysis and CTS;

3. Ultra sound of Kidney;

4. IVP; and

5. CT Scan.

[01 15] The impression is confirmed or denied based on the outcome of the investigation.

[01 16] A plan and medication screen is displayed for a confirmed impression, which lists the required treatment.

[01 17] While the invention has been described with reference to particular embodiments, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that various changes may be made and equivalents may be substituted for elements thereof without departing from the scope of the invention. In addition, many modifications may be made to adapt a particular situation or material to the teachings of the invention without departing from the scope of the invention. Therefore, it is intended that the invention not be limited to the particular embodiments disclosed as the best mode contemplated for carrying out this invention, but that the invention will include all embodiments falling within the scope and spirit of the appended claims. In addition, the logic flows depicted in the figures do not require the particular order shown, or sequential order, to achieve desirable results.

[01 18] For example, this invention has been described using the PQRS and HEDIS quality metrics for the quality metric requirements database. However, the quality metric requirements database can be based on any other desired quality metric, such as quality metrics developed by countries other than the U.S. Furthermore, while the present invention has been described in regards to internal medicine, the present invention is also applicable to any type of specialty.