Intended for healthcare professionals

Letters Electronic health records

The naked truth

BMJ 2010; 341 doi: (Published 13 October 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;341:c5637
  1. Susan Bewley, consultant obstetrician1,
  2. Rupert Fawdry, consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist 2,
  3. Grant Cummings, consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist 3,
  4. Helga Perry, electronic systems and resources librarian4
  1. 1St Thomas’ Hospital, King’s Health Partners, London SE1 7EH, UK
  2. 2Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire, UK
  3. 3Dr Gray’s Hospital, Elgin, UK
  4. 4University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust, UK
  1. susan.bewley{at}

Despite the expense, frustration, and slow implementation of electronic health records, hospital clinicians still believe in “imagined, ideal electronic records systems.”1 But is this a case of an emperor with no clothes? There is little hard evidence of benefits in patient outcome, and confidentiality concerns remain.2 The rigidity of analysable electronic records has been underestimated. Terminology and …

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