Since I know that most of you don’t go back and see the great comments that are being made on older posts, I think it’s worth highlighting comments that are interesting and valuable. Here’s a comment that was made by Jeff Epstein which I think is a good call to action for doctors to reject those EMR vendors who are great at sales and marketing, but short on delivering what’s important.
This may have been true a few years ago (EMRs being hard to install and harder to use), but in 2009 EMRs have to be simple and intuitive. EMRs have to be easy to use and they have to be helpful. I don’t want an EMR that lengthens my day (2 minutes per patient lengthens my day by an hour) and makes my job harder! I don’t care about the payers and the government and the data collectors. I care about my patients and my ability to provide excellent care, document their care, write prescriptions and order tests, consultants and a plan of care.
There are many EMRs today that ARE easy to use, easy to learn and don’t cost an arm and a leg! We have to find these EMRs and purchase these EMRs. We have to reward this type of EMR and punish the EMRs which force us to enter data for the data collectors, thereby wasting our time or expecting us to spend hours of uncompensated time doing things that benefit others.
If your EMR does not save you time, you have a bad EMR. If you have to jerry-rig your EMR to get a note done at the point-of-care, while seeing the patient, you have a bad EMR. Bad EMRs will ruin our healthcare system.