On September 30th, 2014, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed the first travel-associated case of US Ebola in Dallas, TX. The events surrounding the care of this first case of Ebola in the US uncovered one of the biggest vulnerabilities of outpatient medicine misdiagnosis. The case also illustrated how the use of electronic health records (EHRs) can become a potential barrier to making a correct or timely diagnosis. In this paper, we analyze the case, discuss several missed opportunities and outline key challenges facing diagnostic decision-making in EHR-enabled health care. Until recently, diagnostic errors have not received the respect and attention they deserve and have only now begun to find a possible place on the policy agenda.
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