Interesting Survey on Consumer’s View of Electronic Medical Records

Posted on May 1, 2007 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

I often get emails from all sorts of people that want me to post this information or that. Sometimes I read it. Most the times I just delete it. Although, I almost always inspect it to see if it is worth reading. Today I found one that was pretty interesting. It’s a survey commissioned by QuadraMed (AMEX: QD, www.quadramed.com) that polled 587 American consumers. Here’s the summary results:

When asked if they were aware of the concept of electronic medical records, respondents were split (Yes: 49%, No: 51%).
After reviewing the definition of electronic medical records, the majority of respondents agreed that electronic medical records would increase each of the following:
The quality level of care they receive (91%)
The efficiency of the overall healthcare system (*93%)
The likelihood that they would chose a doctor or hospital with the technology needed to access and update EMRs over one that did not (82%).

I was actually surprised that consumers actually were aware of the concept of electronic medical records. Although, I guess the numbers could be skewed. I often say that I work at a Health Center doing Electronic Medical Records. People nod their head like they know what they’re talking about. Occasionally I follow up with a question like, you know what electronic medical records are? They usually give you a dumb look and say, well I can kind of understand what an electronic record is. Then, they usually admit that they have no clue what I really do.

I do think the last number is the most interesting. 82% of people would be more likely to go to a doctor’s office that had an EMR. This reminds me of a discussion we had a long time ago on EMRUpdate. Someone wanted to market to their patients that they had an EMR and came up with the clever slogan Got EMR? I don’t think it really went anywhere, but all of us on the forum got a good laugh thinking about how you could promote your use of an EMR to your patients.

I don’t know about the rest of the world, but here in Las Vegas it seems like the doctors have more than enough patients and don’t need to really market their services. Maybe if there was an over supply of doctors, patients would look into a doctor’s EMR use more. For now, paper chart or EMR will probably do most consumers.