Eric Heiden, Olympic Gold Medalist, Brings Information Technology to His Medical Practice
February 19, 2010
Eric Heiden, a U.S. speed skater and the first athlete to win five gold medals at a single Olympic Winter Games, is now achieving a different kind of success working as an orthopedic surgeon and fulfilling his lifelong dream of practicing medicine.
Following the footsteps of his father, Heiden is practicing medicine with the same dedication, passion and drive that he displayed as a world-class athlete. He is very quick at embracing new ideas in order to make Heiden Orthopaedics, his Park City, Utah, practice, the best that it can be.
“There is a fine line between being successful and not being successful,” said Heiden. “Whether it’s in sports or medicine or some other profession, you always need to do that little bit extra, try that little bit harder. You have to keep an open mind, watch what’s going on in other industries, and then be willing to incorporate new ideas and new technologies that will allow you to do what you do even better.”
Dr. Heiden is already in the process of implementing a records-management software system that will take Heiden Orthopedics to the cutting edge of information technology.
“We are on the cusp of major technological changes in the medical field with regard to patient medical charts,” he explains, “but a lot of private practices have not yet made the transition. I’ve been practicing medicine for 14 years, and when I was at University of California-Davis, we were just starting to put together electronic medical records. I’ve been watching the software capabilities expand for about eight years now. I’ve looked at a lot of different packages and Records Studio was the one for us.”
Just as athletes benefit from high-tech gear, clothing and equipment that enables them to be faster, better, stronger, Heiden says Records Studio utilizes superior technology to help optimize the performance of all departments of his medical practice, not just patient care.
By adapting to any existing records structure, Records Studio,works across all of its business units and departments around the world. Further, it also helps users to create, route, store, search and retrieve data from records, files, documents and e-mail. The Records Studio is very customizable and cost effective.
The Records Studio is also a healthy choice for patients. Gathering relevant patient information is challenging in our current health care system, says Heiden, and electronic records will provide a much more efficient and accurate way to acquire, sort, share and use information as needed, saving time and money for patients as well as doctors, and improving the quality of care. Too much information is lost, mistranslated or duplicated, all of which adds to our country’s increasing health care costs.
“The health care industry is being encouraged to develop electronic medical records,” said Heiden. “There is, in fact, a government stimulus program to help with the cost of implementation. The hope is that by having electronic medical record, correct information can be easily and securely disseminated within the medical field. Now, with paper charts, it’s very difficult to gather pertinent patient information, especially if that patient has seen a number of different providers.”
The bottom line, said Heiden, is that utilizing Records Studio will allow him more time to do his real job – practicing medicine – and helping other athletes reach their goals and achieve their dreams.
Deepika Mala is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Marisa Torrieri