Not an EMR Pessimist

Posted on January 31, 2009 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.

It seems like from my recent post about the possible reasons Healthcare IT can’t spend $20 billion has some people thinking that it was a negative post about the funding and possibly Healthcare IT/EMR as well.

I can assure you that I am most definitely an optimist in life and EMR. I don’t think I could support and implement an EMR if I wasn’t that way. In fact, that was kind of the purpose of my post about the long term benefits of broad EMR adoption. My point in that post was to suggest that the benefits of broad EMR adoption will be incredible. Just that it’s probably hard for most of us (including myself) to see the possibilities of having an EMR in every doctor’s office.

My hope in highlighting the possible challenges is to hopefully provide a platform for a larger discussion of the issues associated with this unprecedented investment in health care. In fact, I’d say that one of my main goals with this blog is to provide those interested in EMR points to consider when implementing an EMR. I believe information and discussion is powerful and I hope that I’ve helped to make that discussion and information sharing to happen.

What is certain is that I’m very optimistic that we’ll get to broad EMR adoption. It’s inevitable. I’ve met a lot of students in medical schools and they can’t understand why every doctor doesn’t use an EMR. This digital generation of students are digital natives. It’s all they’ve known. Once they finally start entering the marketplace in droves we’re going to see a huge shift in EMR adoption and I believe far fewer failures in the process (along with other reasons).

In fact, it makes me wonder if the reason health care has been slower than almost every other industry to adopt technology is because doctors spend so long in school. These digital natives have just begun entering the health care workforce and so they’re impact hasn’t been felt yet. Just a theory, but at least interesting to consider.