EMR versus EHR
Many people everywhere use the terms electronic medical record (EMR) and electronic health record (EHR) interchangeably. However, these terms describe different things. EHR software systems are reliant on EMRs for source data, and EMRs will never reach beyond their point of origination without EHRs in operation.
EMRs are a digital version of the paper charts in the doctor's office and is the source of data for the EHR. An EMR contains the medical and treatment history of a patient for one clinic or practice. But the patient's EMR likely may have to be printed out and mailed to other members of the healthcare team.
EHRs focus on the total health of the patient, going beyond standard data collected in the healthcare provider's office. The National Alliance for Health Information Technology stated that EHR data can be created, managed, and consulted by authorized clinicians and staff across more than one healthcare organization. EHRs are designed to go beyond the health organization that originally collects the health data. EHR software systems are designed to share information with other health care providers and laboratories, and contain information from all the entities involved in the patient's care.