Many physicians have conflicting feelings about electronic medical records. Some complaints include poor usability, time-consuming data entry, needless alerts, and poor workflow. Providers receive thousands of alerts each month, many of which can be ignored. The constant plethora of alerts is causing doctors to grow numb to them.
In the past 5 years, the government has spent about $30 billion in federal incentive payments. These incentive payments resulted in the rapid adoption of electronic health records. The rapid conversion to technology in an unprepared industry is responsible for a number of errors and increased frustration among both physicians and patients.
Healthcare, a heavily information-intensive industry, is plagued by inconsistent quality, millions of errors and high costs. Despite the problems that technology has created, there is evidence that healthcare is improved with computers. It is also expected that the digitization of healthcare will continue to transform the industry with big data techniques and new mobile apps. Improvements will come with the refinement of the software, but also with changes in the work force and culture.
The organization of work in healthcare will be essential to improvement. It will require the training of physicians to focus on the patient, despite the demands of the computer. It will also result in innovative ways to encourage teamwork between doctors and nurses. Additionally, it will require federal policies to promote the sharing of informational data between different systems.
There needs to be an increase of collaboration between researchers and software developers to prevent bugs in systems, and redefine how work is accomplished in a digital environment. A major victory for healthcare will be when physicians have a technology that they cannot function without.
Summary by MedicalGroups.com
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