When It Comes To EHR Updates, Do Clinicians’ Ideologies Matter?
Electronic Health Records (EHR) and clinicians and their ideologies always find it difficult to mingle and work together even though many changes and improvements have been made along.
EHR requires a lot of documentation process and this creates stress and workload for clinicians and that’s the main reason for the concussion between the two. However, the healthcare providers are keen to partner and some have already started to partner with EHR companies to help them create upgrades that result in less stress and make the tech platform more friendly to clinical needs.
Clinicians’ mindset on working things out can be different from the ability of EHRs to solve problems. Even if it is a simple issue, healthcare providers might have some suggestions for changes in the EHR workflow, which could positively impact the whole process.
It will be better if EHR companies collide with the clinicians to get new ideas and design updates to meet the ultimate clinical goals such as simplicity, task completion, alerts, and patient-centered.
What Is An Electronic Health Record (EHR)?
An electronic health record (EHR) is the systematized collection of patient and population electronically-stored health information in a digital format. These records can be shared across different health care settings.
Records are shared through network-connected, enterprise-wide information systems or other information networks and exchanges. EHRs may include a range of data, including demographics, medical history, medication and allergies, immunization status, laboratory test results, radiology images, vital signs, personal statistics like age and weight, and billing information.
How Does The “Co-Creation” Work?
Healthcare providers are now concentrated on working with EHR companies to “co-create” updates. The main aim of the co-creation is to improve the EHR platform as a whole and help clinicians make advanced, better use of the innovative technology.
But there are some restrictions on these collaborations. The upgrades are designed to be customizable for the healthcare system, and they won’t be personalized to an extent till they interfere with clinical care.
Previously, the Electronic Health Records continuum has not been interested in the clinician’s participation in the data as a whole, how they are stored, and how clinicians can review the data on the back end.
EHRs in the long run revealed the cracks in the healthcare system. It showed that gradually the system has moved away from the patient-centric principle to a pure concentration of box-checking of regulations and things like meaningful use (MU).
It almost kept getting wider instead of shrinking the gaps even with several interactions and upgrades.
Is There Any Cure For This Crack Between EHRs And Clinicians?
To find a remedy for these gaps, many experts who are specialized in patient-centric designs are being hired by many organizations.
For example, the Allscripts, in 2020, hired Jenna Date, an adjunct professor at the Human-Computer Interaction Institute at Carnegie-Mellon University, who specializes in human-centered design. The unit has now been renamed Altera Digital Health.
They use a method called “ethnography” (which is the scientific description of peoples, and cultures, with their customs, habits, and mutual differences), to get in and spend time with clinicians. The method they use focuses on the bigger picture. They monitor the changes and impacts that happen from the time of their entry in the morning, during calls, till night.
They not only look at a particular one but they concentrate on different hospitals and look for patterns across those hospitals.
This collaboration made them identify 4 patterns. As we mentioned earlier, a drive for simplicity, helping physicians do their basic work, finding triggers, and alerts in the EHR, and a need for patient-centric focus.
Many healthcare leaders have opened up the importance and need for the human factor in upgrading and modifying EHRs.
- The results of all these experiments and research were that most EHRs don’t bring the most relevant and useful information to clinicians’ attention. And that barricades the clinicians from using the platform to improve care outcomes.
- Another result shows that the EHR which is the digital assistant of clinicians can be customized to the needs of a particular health system but cannot be over-personalized to their needs.
- Because customization revolves around taking a basic set of software and modifying a few things to make it work better for that system. But personalization involves making a separate template for every physician. And that would take the system away from the standard of care and make everything more complicated and time-consuming.
Taking clinicians’ ideologies while upgrading electronic health records is essential so that they can work efficiently along with digital assistance. For making this happen, the method of re-designing and the effectiveness of the same must be measured in order to find whether it’s working or not in the long run.
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