According to a recent study, small medical offices with one or two physicians in the practice are the fastest-growing segment for adoption of electronic health records (EHR) software.
The study comes from SK&A, an Irvine, Calif.-based provider of healthcare information research and databases. Called, “Physician Office Usage of Electronic Health Records Software” it says that for the first time in two years, solo and small practices are outpacing larger group practices in EHR adoption. For the second half of 2011, the adoption rate for single-doctor offices jumped six percentage points, from 30.8 percent to 36.9 percent, while the adoption rate for offices with six-to-ten doctors jumped only two percentage points, from 63 percent to 65 percent.
SK&A’s report was based on an ongoing telephone survey of 240,281 U.S. medical sites, showed an overall EHR adoption rate of 45.6 percent, up from 40.4 percent from the prior period. Overall, the study found EHR adoption rate rises as the number of physicians practicing at each site rises. Offices with three-to-five practicing physicians had 54.9-percent adoption, while offices with 26-plus practicing physicians had 77.2-percent adoption.
In addition, the report found EHR adoption rate rises as the number of exam rooms at each site rises. Offices with one to three exam rooms had 34.6-percent average adoption, while offices with 11-plus exam rooms had 66.6-percent adoption. Additionally, the average daily patient volume at each site correlates to EHR adoption. Offices with average daily patient volumes of one to 50 patients had 41.2-percent adoption, while offices with 101-plus patients had 68.4-percent adoption.