You may have seen in some of our previous articles that physicians have not been satisfied with EHR software usability.
Well, not much has changed from 2014 to now: according to a recent poll by Medical Practice Insider and QuantiaMD conducted in mid-March, “more than 60 percent of doctors do not consider their current EHR a worthwhile investment.”
Why the continued dissatisfaction with EHRs?
The answer lies in the EHR’s usability tied into its “distraction from direct patient interaction."
”There are tons of EHRs currently on the market; many physicians rushed into purchasing one, without testing it out first to see its compatibility with their independent practice.
Acquisition or Bust
For many independent physicians, the expenses and continual costs for EHRs are a surefire step to going out of business. Without the supplemental support of a larger medical group, hospital, or stage agency, steep financial challenges and restrictions to RCM exist for smaller practices seeking ongoing use of EHRs. Instead of downsizing staff and increasing patients seen due to the purported conveniences of an EHR, it is doing quite the opposite for independently-owned medical practices.
Some physicians are left with no choice but to undergo acquisition by merging with a larger medical group or hospital to avoid going out of business—that or they are closing their practices and working in a more corporate hospital setting (sometimes to their chagrin, sometimes not).
Time-Consuming and a Lack of Patient Care
Another popular opinion revolves around the fact that EHRs are time-consuming and lack a friendly ease-of-use interface. This, in turn, detracts from the quality of patient care for many physicians.
The issue and push from the Obama Administration to offer an incentives program for EHR integration and meaningful use pushed a multitude of physicians to purchase EHRs. Yet one poll participant said that they should’ve just accepted the CMS penalty in order to find the “superior product” that would work best for his family practice.
If you didn’t know already, if a practice does not adopt an EHR system or failed to show or attest to “meaningful use” by March 20, 2015, CMS’s Medicare reimbursements will be reduced 1%. This will continue to climb year by year, or as regulations emerge.
Don’t be afraid to tell us how you feel about your EHR: is it right for your practice? Ideally, you should be spending less time in the office and more time with patients. Whether you are part of this 60 percent or not, let us at PracticeForces help you find the right scalability plan for your medical billing to place the priority back on what matters—your quality of patient care and time spent.