Dissatisfaction Abounds with Electronic Health Systems

Approximately 51% of respondents had difficulties importing medication lists.

A recent survey suggests that electronic health record systems (EHR) could potentially be difficult to use, suggesting a possible need for improvement.

The survey was conducted by the AmericanEHR Partners, which was created by the American College of Physicians (ACP) and Cientis Technologies. Researchers included 1400 clinicians to focus on the usability of EHR systems for certain tasks.

Recording a patient’s smoking status, refilling a prescription, or creating and transmitting a prescription, was said to be easy or very easy by approximately 73.2%, 69.5%, and 68.7% of respondents, respectively. However, 51% of respondents said it was difficult or very difficult to import a medication list, and 49% said it was difficult or very difficult to make any corrections.

Researchers found that the respondents’ overall satisfaction with their EHR systems was linked to their reported ease or use of the system, according to the study. Approximately 89% who reported the system is easy or very easy to use said they were satisfied or very satisfied, while 90% of respondents who reported their EHR system was difficult or very difficult to use were dissatisfied.

Researchers also found that the ease of use also increased the longer the physician had been using the system.

“This type of data is very useful in showing that there are many different factors that need to be considered when examining EHR usability,” concluded ACP Vice President of Governmental Affairs and Medical Practice, Shari Erickson, MPH. “We need to focus on figuring out how these data can best be translated into developing or modifying EHR systems to make them truly helpful to physicians and practices.”