Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Kevin, MD: USA Today Op-Ed


One of New Media Medicine's leading voices, Kevin Pho, has another op-ed piece in USA Today. It is entitled, "Why Doctors Still Balk At Electronic Medical Records." Here is an excerpt:
Despite the advantages of computerized records — including reduction of errors, improved preventive care and potential health care cost savings — adoption of the technology remains distressingly low. In addition, the learning curve for these programs is steep, increasing the amount of time a physician spends per patient.

Furthermore, today's electronic record systems are riddled with problems. Many programs boil the patient encounter down to a series of "yes" or "no" questions that are then entered into the software. The resulting computer-generated notes are almost devoid of useful clinical information.
I could not agree more. I am a primary care physician myself and our physician group has been dragging our feet on getting an electronic medical records system. The reasons above are among our rationale. In addition, Kevin is now a member of the USA Today's Board of Contributors. Congrats on this and thanks for keeping up the voice of physicians.

2 comments:

Marica Pook, MD said...

I'm a hospitalist that works at two different hospitals using two different EMRS (Epic and Meditech). EPIC is VERY difficult to learn, and ADDS about 10-15 minutes to each admission because we do order entry. There is a trade off; you are simply exchanging one type of an error for another with EMR order entry. I think EMRs are not quite ready for prime time when they are adding to the time it takes to see patients. Further more, you are not spending face time with a patient when you are typing!

James said...

Having medical records was a huge factor in ranking residency programs for me. I can't imagine accepting a job at a place where they still use paper charts.