According to the fourth annual “Healthcare IT Insights and Opportunities” survey from IT trade association, a significant inroad has been made on the adoption of Electronic Health Records (EHRs) with six in ten healthcare providers having at least part of an EHR system in place. The survey included polls from 375 doctors, dentists and other care providers, and found a satisfaction rate averaging in the low 60s – indicating “acceptable performance,” but leaving much room for improvement with electronic health records, researchers say. The survey generally finds positive attitudes toward EHRs, especially compared with past polls.
The highpoints of providers with EHRs included better ease of use, improved interoperability with other systems, faster speeds, more vendor training and improved remote access and mobility features.
Researchers also added that with users moving along the learning curve they become more adept and efficient in leveraging the capabilities of EMR/EHR systems.
Still, “relatively few adopters fully understand what an EMR/EHR implementation entails,” according to CompTIA. “While many healthcare providers anticipated the disruption associated with a significant workplace transformation, 40 percent indicated their EMR/EHR implementation was actually worse than expected.”
“Granted, 56 percent also acknowledged being less than optimally prepared for the transition to EMR/EHR,” the report notes. “Additionally, a sizable percentage of healthcare providers didn’t fully understand the impact to workflow, which inevitably may have contributed to frustration. The take-away: for the unprepared, an EMR/EHR implementation can be a challenging endeavor.”
Vendors have their work cut out for them if they want to prosper into the future, according to CompTIA.
The report also showed that providers expect vendors to offer ‘quality from start to finish’. Deployment of HER systems and their correct functionality are amongst the priority demands of healthcare providers from vendors. They also want training sessions for themselves and their staff to understand the systems and provide and install updates – preferably wirelessly; to offer remote monitoring around the clock, and proactively fix issues as soon as the problem occurs.
“IT solution providers must be extra diligent in communicating the steps of the implementation plan, especially in the pre-implementation stage,” according to the report. “This can go a long way towards allaying concerns. For many healthcare providers a transition to EMR/EHR entails not only a physical change in workflow, but also a change in mindset.”
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