EHR Usability Cause Of Key Pain Points For Healthcare CIOs

Kyle Murphy | EHR Intelligence | October 22, 2014

EHR adoption is increasing, but EHR usability remains a problem for end-users trying to enter and access data efficiently.

Whereas EHR adoption continues to increase among healthcare organizations and providers, EHR usability remains a problem for end-users trying to enter and access data efficiently, according to a new Frost & Sullivan survey of healthcare CIOs.  EHR users have often complained about the time commitment associated with EHR data entry and its impact on physician-patient interaction, but they appear to be encountering difficulties finding information in the EHR as well.  Running from March to May 2014, Frost & Sullivan surveyed health IT professionals in conjunction with the College of Health Information Management Executives (CHIME), focusing primarily on healthcare CIOs working in mid- to large-sized community hospitals.

According to preview of the report, problems related to searching EHRs are commonplace. The slowness of the EHR systems and a lack of precise query results are preventing EHR users from conveniently accessing unstructured data or performing targeted searches.  The report identifies main causes of these EHR search-related problems as rudimentary search functionalities and poor EHR usability rather than a lack of end-user training or clinical resistance to EHR adoption. Helping improve search features in core EHR technology is a mixture of national language processing and visualization tools, the authors of the report claim.

The authors indicate that immaturity of current EHR technology should generate competition among EHR and health IT developers to create more useable EHR software. However, a lack of progress now could have could have far-reaching effects moving forward on patient safety let alone the delivery of quality care, says the head of the association connected with the survey...