The healthcare industry has experienced several real clinical and financial benefits accruing from the widespread adoption of Electronic Health Records (EHRs). Acting as reliable digital repositories of crucial patient data, EHRs promote appropriate care decisions while reducing medical errors. However, clinicians are worried about the workload that accompanies EHRs. They are particularly concerned about its time-consuming nature, which accounts for one of the factors contributing to physician burnout.

I beg to differ, though. I believe physician burnout can be effectively addressed if you deploy the right EHR and optimize it to the best of its capabilities and features. An optimal EHR will ease off your burdens and reduce frustrations rather than aggravating them. Here’s how:

Configure your EHR to your needs and workflows

The majority of EHRs come in a ‘one size fits all’ model. Make sure you don’t fall prey to this. Such systems fail to adapt well to different sized practices and specialties. Neither can they accommodate varying patient populations. The result is an added burden on the physician using the system. The solution is relatively simple. Get your EHR configured to your practice’s workflows, patient population, and institutional needs. Get it customized to include the content and modules that you require for streamlining your workflows.

Capitalize on the Power of Analytics

An efficient EHR solution must capitalize upon the underlying analytics. This then offers the physicians vital information to comprehend what is most effective in terms of optimizing the EHR for better health outcomes. Make sure your EHR provides advanced tools for escalation management so that you don’t have to interpret raw data. Moreover, ask your EHR vendor to include a graphical representation of patient-report data features to aid in your clinical decisions.

Stay Patient-Focused

To optimize your EHR, you must necessarily keep the focus patient-centric. Patient access to the portal and user-friendly interface are two prerequisites to optimizing EHR EMR Systems. Patients should be able to enter their history, medications quickly and remotely, to save your team’s burden during appointments. Allowing patient data to flow automatically diverts time away from documentation and data entry towards more core functions. In return, the providers can better understand patient needs and improve follow-up care.

Improve EHR Usability

Once you have the system configured to your workflows, it’s time to invest time and effort to make it usable. Engage your IT department staff on this task and take them on board to improve the usability of the system for your practice. Multiple small changes to the EHR usability can render a significant positive impact on the overall efficiency of the system. This will then ease substantial administrative burdens. Moreover, you can discover EHR customization strategies that can be proposed to the IT department staff to improve EHR usability.

EHRs are here to stay. The best plausible solution to address the administrative burden associated with EHRs is to optimize your system to make the most out of it.

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Summer Larson background in healthcare stretches over 11 years. He is a well-renowned health IT expert and contributes regularly to popular blogs and websites. She covers topics ranging from health reforms to the application of IT in healthcare. In 2013 he formed EMR Specialist, a company specializing in assisting providers with the adoption and implementation of electronic health records (EHR) and working with EHR vendors on usability and certification projects. Summer Larson is also an avid Star Wars fan.

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