Debates, Studies and Reports…Can’t EHRs be an IT Solution vs an IT Problem?
There are numerous blogs, studies and reports on the ROI of EHR, increased/decreased patient satisfaction, safety and productivity. One thing is for sure…the 700+ EHR vendors all claim great ROI and the doctors and other clinicians utilizing the EHR cry out on the lack of ROI and interruption of the physician-patient relationship.
A recent discussion in the HIMSS Linkedin Group prompted by a blog “Ending debate on EMR effectiveness? | Healthcare IT News” pointed out the absurdity of studies and claims of the “debate” being over, etc. What is the cost/benefit analysis of the EHR? What are the costs associated with transforming a practicing physician into a data clerk? And more.
The first comment was shared by Dr. Narayanachar Murali MD, FACP, FACG; “Show us useful products first! The debate should not even start when we don’t have usable or useful products…”
Rob Tholemeier, Consultant, suggested you can’t effectively calculate ROI until you know ALL the costs of an EHR and factor them in.
Matt Davis, an Orthopedic Surgeon made additional great points: “The real problem with EMRs in general is that they are not targeted at the end-user, the physician. Most of them are simply data mining tools and billing software wrapped up in a pretty package. Add to that the-disconnect from a free market price structure with government incentives and penalties and you have a completely useless product that is overpriced and difficult to use. Kind of like some auto manufacturers that are “Too big to fail”. If your product is not valuable, it will fail. You can prop it up with subsidies and sales pitches about increased productivity but in the end it will still fail.”
In a March, 2014 blog post on Government HealthIT William K. Kapp III, MD, CEO and chairman of Landmark Hospitals and Technomad concurs with Dr. Davis’s comment about EHRs not being designed for the end user. The blog, “HIT: If it doesn’t work like physicians, it doesn’t work for physicians” suggests “… truly disruptive technology must do three things—increase engagement, maximize the efficiency of care, and be available anytime, anywhere…”
It is my hope that more EHRs like UC Charting Solutions’ ProMentum will be developed as their solution focuses on efficient workflow systems and a return to an engaged provider-patient experience.An EHR Providing an IT Solution Clinicians Like