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August 13, 2015

AMA survey: Physician satisfaction with EHR systems has plummeted

Daily Briefing

Physicians' satisfaction with electronic health record (EHR) systems has declined by nearly 30 percentage points over the last five years, according to a survey released this week.

Are EHRs driving doctors to quit?

Survey details

For the survey—which was conducted by the American Medical Association and AmericanEHR Partners—940 physicians answered an online questionnaire consisting of 155 questions conducted between May 30, 2014, and July 18, 2014. AmericanEHR Partners is a no-cost online resource created by the American College of Physicians and Cientes Technologies.

Survey findings

The survey found 34% of respondents said they were satisfied or very satisfied with their EHR systems, compared with 61% of respondents in a similar survey conducted five years ago.

'My EHR is broken!': Why that's not the real issue, plus other answers execs need to know

Specifically, the survey found:

  • 42% of respondents described their EHR system's ability to improve efficiency as difficult or very difficult;
  • 43% of respondents said they were still addressing productivity challenges related to their EHR system;
  • 54% of respondents said their EHR system increased total operating costs; and
  • 72% of respondents described their EHR system's ability to decrease workload as difficult or very difficult.

In addition, the survey found primary care physicians generally were more likely to be satisfied with their EHR system than specialists because they typically have worked with the systems longer. According to the report, it took physicians an average of three years to overcome initial EHR-related hurdles (Durben Hirsch, FierceEMR, 8/10; American College of Physicians release, 8/10; Heath, EHR Intelligence, 8/11).

How to help doctors learn to love EHRs

Physicians' frustration over electronic health records often prevents organizations from fully realizing EHRs' benefits. So how do you maximize your returns, and encourage physician buy-in? 

 Here are resources designed to help:

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