As my practice worked through the meaningful use attestation process earlier this year, I began to believe that the government was putting us through the electronic equivalent of an aerial acrobatic maneuver that would impress Ethan Hunt of “Mission: Impossible” fame. And I wasn’t pleased.
Every story has two sides, and I try hard in my writing to at least understand the other side of an argument, even if I don’t agree with it. Unfortunately, on this topic, I’m about to give up. Electronic health records and more specifically, the requirements of meaningful use associated with them, are downright silly and in my opinion possibly purposely designed so that small-town, single-specialty groups cannot possibly economically achieve them.
Let’s start, though, with some background. Even young docs like myself have seen handwritten notes that are simply illegible. We all know examples of duplicated services done simply because one hospital or physician could not communicate with another. We are aware that the paradigm of the paternal physician telling a patient what needs to be done has been replaced by one where patients expect input to their health care and access to their medical records. Thus, I can understand the desire to transition from a paper health care record system to something different.
But is a certified EHR the way to do that?
More from Dr. Rosevear