From time to time on Neurosurgery Blog, you will see us cross-posting or linking to items from other places that we believe will be of interest to our readers. Today’s post originally appeared in MedPage Today on Jan. 21. In the op-ed, neurosurgeons Anthony M. DiGiorgio, DO, MHA, and Praveen V. Mummaneni, MD, MBA discuss the burden of electronic health records (EHR) at their institution, the University of California San Francisco.
Drs. DiGiorgio and Mummaneni audited EHR logs to examine our neurosurgery residents’ work and better understand the benefits and burdens. The results found that on-call residents spent 20 hours logged into the EHR over a single shift. They are detracting from trainees’ educational experience, and health care costs are increasing because of the inefficiencies that come with EHRs.
Drs. DiGiorgio and Mummaneni note that many inefficiencies come from Medicare regulations. For example, the appropriate use criteria program was developed to reduce unnecessary imaging ordered by physicians. Their EHR audit found this added just a few minutes of computer time to the residents’ days. However, there is no evidence that this regulation reduces unnecessary imaging. Many more regulations add a few minutes here and a few minutes there.
Drs. DiGiorgio and Mummaneni state that “it’s death by 10,000 clicks” and urge continued involvement in advocacy to reverse the ever-increasing EHR burden.
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