AMA Seeks EHR Upgrade

The American Medical Association has released a framework to improve usability of electronic health records so as to benefit the patients and providers.

Building on its landmark study with RAND Corp. confirming that discontent with electronic health records (EHRs) is taking a significant toll on physicians, the American Medical Association (AMA) today called for solutions to EHR systems that have neglected usability as a necessary feature. Responding to the urgent physician need for better designed EHR systems, the AMA today released a new framework outlining eight priorities for improving EHR usability to benefit caregivers and patients.

"Physician experiences documented by the AMA and RAND demonstrate that most electronic health record systems fail to support efficient and effective clinical work," said AMA President-elect Steven J. Stack, M.D. "This has resulted in physicians feeling increasingly demoralized by technology that interferes with their ability to provide first-rate medical care to their patients."

While AMA/RAND findings show physicians generally expressed no desire to return to paper record keeping, physicians are justly concerned that cumbersome EHR technology requires too much time-consuming data entry, leaving less time for patients. Numerous other studies support these findings, including a recent survey by International Data Corporation that found 58 percent of ambulatory physicians were not satisfied with their EHR technology, "most office-based providers find themselves at lower productivity levels than before the implementation of their EHR" and that "workflow, usability, productivity, and vendor quality issues continue to drive dissatisfaction."

Link to the press release on AMA's website: http://bit.ly/1u3zAKZ