Surveyed Physicians: EHR Systems are “Too Cumbersome” | Healthcare Informatics Magazine | Health IT | Information Technology Skip to content Skip to navigation

Surveyed Physicians: EHR Systems are “Too Cumbersome”

October 9, 2013
by Gabriel Perna
| Reprints

Physicians are not big fans of electronic health records (EHRs), saying they are too cumbersome to operate and a big reason for their job dissatisfaction, a new survey from the Santa Monica, Calif.-based nonprofit research organization, the RAND Corporation, reveals.

The survey, sponsored by the American Medical Association (AMA), was the findings of RAND Corporation's research of 30 physician practices in six states — Colorado, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin. In total, researchers spoke with 220 physicians, medical administrators and allied health professionals, in an attempt to understand the motivating factors for job satisfaction and dissatisfaction in a physician’s life.

“Many things affect physician professional satisfaction, but a common theme is that physicians describe feeling stressed and unhappy when they see barriers preventing them from providing quality care,” stated Mark Friedberg, M.D. the study's lead author and a natural scientist at RAND. “If their perceptions about quality are correct, then solving these problems will be good for both patients and physicians.”

The study found that physicians are down on current EHRs. According to the physicians, the systems interfered with face-to-face discussions with patients, forced physicians to spend too much time performing clerical work, and degraded the accuracy of medical records by encouraging template-generated notes. Furthermore, physicians say the systems are too costly and don’t allow them to “talk” to each other, preventing the transmission of patient medical information when it is needed.

“Physicians believe in the benefits of electronic health records, and most do not want to go back to paper charts,” Friedberg said. “But at the same time, they report that electronic systems are deeply problematic in several ways. Physicians are frustrated by systems that force them to do clerical work or distract them from paying close attention to their patients.”

Medical practices surveyed said they employ additional staff members to perform many of the tasks involved in using electronic records to quell the frustration. This helps doctors' focus their interactions with EHR on activities truly requiring a physician's training.

Topics

News

Former Michigan Governor to Serve as Chair of DRIVE Health

Former Michigan Governor John Engler will serve as chair of the DRIVE Health Initiative, a campaign aimed at accelerating the U.S. health system's transition to value-based care.

NJ Medical Group Launches Statewide HIE, OneHealth New Jersey

The Medical Society of New Jersey (MSNJ) recently launched OneHealth New Jersey, a statewide health information exchange (HIE) that is now live.

Survey: 70% of Providers Using Off-Premises Computing for Some Applications

A survey conducted by KLAS Research found that 70 percent of healthcare organizations have moved at least some applications or IT infrastructure off-premises.

AMIA Warns of Tax Bill’s Impact on Graduate School Programs in Informatics

Provisions in the Republican tax bill that would count graduate student tuition waivers as taxable income would have detrimental impacts on the viability of fields such as informatics, according to the American Medical Informatics Association.

Appalachia Project to Study Relationship Between Increased Broadband Access, Improved Cancer Care

The Federal Communications Commission and the National Cancer Institute have joined forces to focus on how increasing broadband access and adoption in rural areas can improve the lives of rural cancer patients.

Survey: By 2019, 60% of Medicare Revenues will be Tied to Risk

Medical groups and health systems that are members of AMGA (the American Medical Group Association) expect that nearly 60 percent of their revenues from Medicare will be from risk-based products by 2019, according to the results from a recent survey.