Streamlining County Health Records


In an effort to give Los Angeles County residents the best health care services possible, Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas would like to see a single unified county electronic health record system that will reduce duplication of records and increase communication between county health departments. Currently, the departments of Mental Health, Public Health and Health Services are using separate electronic health record systems.

The motion was unanimously approved by the Board of Supervisors and calls for a report expected by July that will examine the cost and timeline for how to bring all departments under one system called Online Real-time Centralized Health Information Database (ORCHID). Among the three county health departments, only the Department of Health Services uses ORCHID, a system that provides unified patient records and supports various health care provider needs. An electronic health records system replaces paper charts, allows physicians and clinical to access patient information, such as a patient’s medical history and laboratory results, without scrambling to find paper records.

“Consolidating electronic health record systems can transform the way that health care is delivered by making information unified and available whenever and wherever it is needed,” said Supervisor Ridley-Thomas. “We must make sure that patients’ records are safe and secure and we must also bring Los Angeles County residents the most reliable and accessible health care services possible.”