Here’s what I wrote in a Doximity feed after reading comment after comment of physicians lamenting the state of EHRs. I wish I could copy these comments but I think it’s closed to only clinicians so I won’t try to post or link it here. The short of it is that these comments made me cry…almost no one likes their EHR, almost all of these comments evoke despair and anger. All we as physicians can emote is hopelessness over a messed up situation where physicians seemingly have no control of their destinies. Here was my response:
All of us physicians are right about how the EMR has ruined our profession. But as Dr. Lamberts has commented, let’s not blame the technology. Let’s blame the individuals and organizations who have hijacked this technology and has left out the physicians and patients who ought to play the largest role in designing and refining OUR clinical tool (which I believe any digital health record ought to be, and not a billing engine).
We can’t go back to paper and pen. We can do better than records and EHRs that can’t talk to one another. We can’t wait for Apple to create an EHR for us. We can’t wait for the government to create a national competition to select an EHR for us. The reason why patients and physicians have no say about our EHR destinies? It’s the money and who has it…do physician’s generally buy the large scale EHRs? No. Do patient’s buy the large scale EHRs? No. EHR companies know that the way to a purse is who holds the purse strings. That is why they don’t care about us. We can complain all we want but no one will listen to our concerns because we have no financial power to force them to listen to us.
However…there is precisely a mechanism where physicians CAN take back our technology and through that power, we can transform of perverted system and leave our current health IT behind. 3 major technological concepts that we all should learn about are:
1. Open source code
2. User managed access and single sign-on technology
3. Blockchain technology
These 3 items are the key to unlocking our way out of this EHR mess. Interested in knowing more about it? I write about it here. https://noshemr.wordpress.com/2017/07/19/how-to-fix-the-ehr-mess-were-in-part-two/
This is not just a theory…it is true that if physicians stand with patients as a united community and with the 3 tools that already exist today, we can take back our records, and use them for good, and where we can document notes in our way that makes sense for us and for our patients. Imagine using this technology to blast these 1990’s legacy EHRs to the dustbin of history, but this time physicians and patients will now be in control. Let’s do this!