EHR And HIPAA Through History

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It’s hard to imagine a time in our health care that we weren’t protected. A time when everything was handwritten and had to be filed. This was a time in history when HER (electronic health records) and the protection of HIPAA (Health Insurance Potability and Accountability) wasn’t even thought of. I’m talking about back in the 1950’s and 1960’s when electronic health records would have boggled doctors or health care professional minds. Even the thought of a law such as HIPAA wasn’t even imaginable in those times.

POMR- (Problem Oriented Medical Records)

Our health records dates back in a time before the first computer system had internet service. One of the first to improve the keeping of patient’s medical records was POMR. Health records originated by paper records known as Problem-Oriented Medical Records in 1968. As of today, some facilities still use POMR, but not many. Through the years, our heath care medical records evolved so much that POMR is almost a thing of the past.

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As years evolved with our technology, as did our health care. In the early 1990’s the computer-based patient records were written and came to be by Richard S. Dick, Elaine B. Steen and Don E. Detmer. Thanks to CPR being g created, it was now easier for users to have accurate data, alerts, reminders and clinical decision support. Along with CPR, the 90’s also brought to us HIPAA. Until 1996 there was nothing set to protect our health care privacy and records. In Aug. 1996, President Bill Clinton signed the ACT to implement health care protection whether it is paper records or electronic. So, in signing this ACT called HIPAA, President Bill Clinton provided us with the means to have our health care records protected and to stay private. (Rouse)

HIPPA and HIPAA Violations

HIPAA was designed to protect employees’ health records that may have lost their jobs, but HIPAA also has other objectives. Other objectives of this ACT are to combat waste, fraud, and abuse in health care and health insurance and improving health insurance for long term care. HIPAA does have an impact on EHR. HIPAA’s regulations require HIPAA to protect electronic health records in keeping patients records and information private and secure. All physicians or health care providers who have access to a patient record “must” follow and comply with all HIPAA regulations and rules. Many things are considered before a physician can be granted access to a patient file. One of the many things is a physicians’ relationship or affiliation with the facility, also the intentions behind the need to access the file. Another is the reason to why the physicians’ personal would need access, such as things like billing or procedures. HIPAA also protects the standards of EHR. EHR standards are important due to reduced medical mistakes, lower costs and correct medical records. There are many rules of the HIPAA Law and EHR is only one of the many.

When accessing a patients’ records for reasons other than those that follow the privacy law such as payment, treatments or billing, you will be in violation of HIPAA law. Accessing any patients file for any reason other than allowed is considered a violation. An employee who looks at a patients file that may be family or even a co-worker is considered “snooping. Snooping is a violation that is considered a crime and could result in a fine and/or jail time. It’s not common but it has happened.

Evaluation of HIPAA Over Time

Since the beginning of 1990, EHR has had much improvement. We now have greater continuity car, improved efficiency and better emergency readiness and response. Having greater continuity care allows for receiving high quality care. Improved efficiency allows for quicker access to patients and saves time accessing patient records with ease. It is important that we have quick response time and better prepared for an emergency.

Over time, thanks to technology, our EHR, with the help from Apple, Google and Amazon has improved even more. Apple, Google and Amazon have introduced health information and health record apps. We can now access our PMR (Personal Medical Records) via our smart phones or other electronical devices. It can make it much easier for patients to keep track of any upcoming appointment, medication refills, and allergy history. As the generations evolve, our health care evolves making it easier to stay on top of being heathy.


From the conception of POMR in the 60’s to HIPAA in the 90’s, our medical care and privacy has taken a huge leap forward, allowing for the best care and protection possible. In having HIPAA implemented into rules and law, we as patients can feel confident in knowing we are protected. When President Clinton signed the ACT into law it also protected our privacy even if we had lost our jobs. Our health care, whether paper records or electronical records, and/or our private information stays that way. Private. Thanks to President Clinton and HIPAA, if there happens to be a breach in our health care records or personal information it is punishable by law. Under HIPAA rules it can cost as much as $50,000.00 and/or one year in prison.

6 Key dates that HIPAA laws were enforced in History

  • August 1996—HIPAA signed into law by President Bill Clinton
  • April 2003—Effective date of HIPAA Privacy Rule
  • April 2005—Effective date of Security Rule
  • March 2006—Effective date of Breach Enforcement Rule
  • September 2009—Effective date of HITECH and the Breach Notification Rule
  • March 2013—Effective date of Final OMNIBUS Rule. The closing paragraph is designed to bring the reader to your way of thinking if you are writing a persuasive essay, to understand relationships if you are writing a comparison/contrast essay, or simply to value the information you provide in an informational essay. The closing paragraph summarizes the key points from the supporting paragraphs without introducing any new information.


  1. HIPAA history. (2020, May 19). HIPAA Journal.
  2. EHRIntelligence. (2015, November 12). Why is establishing standards of EHR use important?
  3. Rouse, Margaret. (2019, February 13). What is HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) ? - Definition from SearchHealthIT.
  4. Ferran, Tod. (2015, March 11). Don't confuse EHR HIPAA compliance with total HIPAA compliance. Healthcare IT News.
  5. Sandy. (2019, April 16). History of electronic health records | EHR | ICANotes. ICANotes.
  6. The most common HIPAA violations you should be aware of. (2020, May 19). HIPAA Journal.
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EHR And HIPAA Through History. (2021, September 23). Edubirdie. Retrieved June 17, 2024, from
“EHR And HIPAA Through History.” Edubirdie, 23 Sept. 2021,
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