Physicians Want Substantial Improvements in EHRs

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Most primary care physicians see value in electronic health records, but many find more challenges than benefits.
Most primary care physicians see value in electronic health records, but many find more challenges than benefits.

HealthDay News — Although primary care physicians (PCPs) see value in electronic health records (EHRs), they want substantial improvements, and generally agree on what these improvements should be, according to research from Stanford Medicine, conducted with The Harris Poll.

Researchers examined perceptions of EHR systems among PCPs, focusing on identifying what problems PCPs encounter with EHRs. A total of 521 PCPs who have been using their current EHR system for one month or longer were surveyed.

According to the survey, most PCPs see value in EHRs; 63 and 66 percent think that EHRs have led to improved care and are at least somewhat satisfied with their current EHR system, respectively. However, 40 percent of PCPs believe there are more challenges than benefits associated with EHRs.

Overall, 62 percent of time devoted to each patient is spent in the EHR, and 49 percent of office-based PCPs believe that EHRs detract from their clinical effectiveness. Seventy-one and 59 percent of PCPs agree that EHRs greatly contribute to burnout and need a complete overhaul, respectively. According to PCPs, the primary value of EHRs is data storage (44 percent); only 8 percent feel that the primary value is clinically related.

Seventy-two percent of PCPs think that improving the EHR user interface could best address EHR challenges in the immediate future, and 67 percent think that solving interoperability deficiencies should be the main priority for the coming decade.

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