The advent of a technology-first approach to medical records arrived with the electronic health record (EHR). With all the benefits of the EHR, there are also challenges. EHR usability for your organization may not be optimized. In fact, patient advocates often note poor EHR usability as the root cause of adverse patient safety incidents. However, there are many ways to improve EHR usability and improve patient experience.
Steps to Improving EHR Usage for Providers
Using your EHR system to its full potential may be exactly where your organization is missing the mark. Here’s what you can do now that will make a difference.
Use EHR Implementation: This is the opportunity to get all your questions answered and truly drill down into all the features of the system. With this step, it’s all about planning with your vendor. You should have a plan that enables you to meet your objectives and protocols in place should new challenges arise. Within this implementation plan, communication should also be addressed. Where are the gaps? How can better EHR usability close them?
Your implementation team can help you design customized templates that fit your needs. You can also learn tips and tricks other organizations like yours are employing to take advantage of what they’ve already figured out.
Integrate the EHR Into Your Culture: The more your team uses it, the more they’ll come to see it as an integral part of your operations. You want your team to fully embrace using the EHR so that it becomes a natural part of the process of serving patients.
In addition to developing an EHR-friendly culture, you should also cultivate a focus on health IT safety. This should be a risk-free scenario where employees can report any potential safety issues. When working with your EHR provider, they, too, should have a similar mindset, ready to identify such risks and create a system that takes corrective action.
Take Advantage of Your Support System: Your EHR provider should have a support team ready to help you when you run into a challenge. When new training is necessary, you’ll need this support team. You want to know you can rely on your provider, but what if you don’t have this confidence? It could be time to find a new partner.
Is It Time to Look for a New EHR Provider?
Not every EHR is built the same. Some systems just don’t take into account EHR usability. They create a program in a vacuum with no real consideration of how it will work in a clinical setting. It’s time to discern whether or not your current vendor provides you with the support and features you need most. It’s time to ask hard questions, such as:
- How long does it take to do simple tasks?
- Does the interface seem simple and easy to understand?
- Does the system provide all the necessary features that your organization needs?
- Does the provider work with you collaboratively to customize workflows and other processes?
These are just a handful of questions to consider. However, if the answers aren’t compatible with your needs, it’s time to find a partner that can meet your goals. At ChartLogic, we offer an ambulatory EHR suite with access to practice management, and revenue cycle management services. Our system is built on understanding workflow and preferences intuitively, facilitating faster note taking and much more. Increase EHR usability with a system that is created specifically for and with medical professionals in mind. See how ChartLogic’s EHR suite works today by requesting a demo.