Our recent guide about how EHRs and EMRs can increase your malpractice risk came with a slew of opinions on the subject. Your voices were heard and we've looked deeper into the problem with these systems.
With the implementation of EMRs and EHRs, doctors are spending more of their time typing symptoms onto a tablet instead of actually speaking and looking at the patient in front of them. Physicians all over the country, including our facebook followers, have expressed their disdain for the systems. They complain that they cause their appointments to run longer and that they are unable to see the same number of patients as they were when they were dictating their notes.
A STUDY IN TIME MANAGEMENT
In a recent study performed by Annals of Internal Medicine, 57 physicians and orthopedics were observed for 430 hours. In that time, they spent 27% of their total time on direct clinical face time with patients and 49.2% of their time on EMRs, EHRs and desk work.
In order to complete their EHRs and EMRs, doctors are losing 2 hours of potential face-to-face contact with their patients. What kind of symptoms on your patients could you be missing in order to complete these systems?
WHERE THE ISSUES ARISE
According to an article written by Delbert H. Meyer, M.D., there are a plethora of issues that physicians in any type of practice across the country need to work out with EMRs and EHRs before they can be deemed useful to the practitioners.
For instance, the below have all been complaints from doctors about using EMRs and EHRs.
1. They're hard to use.
2. They don't provide the basic information in a timely fashion.
3. They don't allow the physician and patient enough interaction.
4. They don't protect patient privacy.
“Technology advances never need government financial incentives to be used. When they are more efficient than the present methods, decrease the number of errors, and improve the quality of patient care, doctors will use them,” Meyer said.
THE FUTURE OF EMRs & EHRs
Other doctors have said that they see the potential in the tools, but they are not performing to the level of sophistication that they need them to be.
“The system needs to be smart enough to know what I've got pending on this patient, what I've got planned, what I need to be doing for preventive healthcare — all that needs to be right in my face before I walk in the door to see the patient. I want to look smart to my patient," Bridget Duffy, MD said.
From what we understand, EMRs and EHRs need to be running at the same intuitive level as Amazon. Before you run out of your favorite soap, your dog's flea medication or find yourself in need or a last minute gift, Amazon is there to remind you or make suggestions based on your interests to ensure you never skip a beat. These days, they can even have what you need on your doorstep within a few hours!
What changes would you like to see to make these systems more efficient and effective?