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Comment Re:"Why are so few doctors using EHR systems?" (Score 1) 111

I have to call you guys on this whole string. Like a few other respondents, I am an actively practicing surgeon, and a programmer in my spare time, so I know what I am talking about.

The main problem in EHRs is that they are designed by programmers. They are built around databases, and force doctors to change their practice in order to fit the database. ARGH!!! Dumb, DUMB, DUMB!!!

I have been using a huge, nation-wide EHR for 3 years. From the get-go we found that the input was unusable: we had to type about 100 different data elements for each and every patient encounter (think 35 patients/day x 100 data elements: how much time does that leave for the patient exam, or for talking to the patient?) And then the database encounter report was unreadable, leading to real patient safety issues.

The only way my staff (the doctors in my department, of which I am the chairman) could use it was to bypass the database altogether. We now scan in paper notes, or text from a Word document (my preference at present). Neither of these gives searchable data. Sorry folks, get over it.

EHRs should be designed by doctors, to match their practice. PLEASE listen to this. PLEASE start with physician needs, or you will never get a workable product

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