I just read one of the best posts I’ve read in quite a while by Marc Holland, CEO of System Research Services about HI(TECH) Anxiety. One of the best parts of the post was a list he did of the concerns physicians and their staff have about the EMR stimulus:
- I don’t have enough Medicare revenues to qualify
- I don’t have enough of a Medicaid patient volume to qualify
- I’m reluctant to shop, let alone buy, until I know what criteria I must meet for my usage to be considered “meaningful”
- The vendors I have spoken with don’t offer a version suitable to my specialty; a general purpose EMR simply doesn’t meet my needs
- I have no personal capability or interest in becoming my own IT department and I don’t have the luxury of staff with the necessary skills
- I haven’t begun to shop and don’t know where to start
- The software I have seen doesn’t match my needs; usability is a key concern
- I’m concerned about sharing my patient information with competitors and with the government, how do I preserve the confidentiality of my patient information?
- How do I obtain and manage patient permissions?
- I need help; lots of help
These concerns really aren’t new. Plus, none of them are really all that significant. It’s just the learning curve that’s required to implement an EMR. Sadly, I think that far too much focus has been on shoving the EMR down people’s throats instead of educating them properly on EMR and the inherent benefits of those EMR.