Electronic Health Records Adoption

Electronic Health Records Adoption & shelves3 Common Fail Points

Electronic health records adoption is a growing trend in the medical field, especially due to HIPAA compliance guidelines and requirements to qualify for Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs. As facilities push for timely adoption, things can go wrong with EHR implementations. Often, blame is placed on technical or system failures. But adoptions can be derailed by other common factors.

Inadequate Support for Electronic Health Records Adoption

According to EMR Advocate president Jim Tate, EHR implementations that don’t have an executive level champion are more likely to fail than adoptions that are fully supported by leadership. Tate says the best way to ensure success is for someone within the practice – a physician, manager, or owner – to be excited about the EHR and encourage buy in from others.

Poor or Overwhelming Training

No matter how awesome a system sounds, Electronic Health Records adoption falls flat if staff don’t know how to use it or find the processes cumbersome. Training is an integral part of every EHR adoption process, but common sense must prevail. Covering every part of an EHR process in an eight-hour classroom marathon burns learners out and could lead toward bitterness of the transition process. Rather, it’s best to:

  • Train on important daily functions
  • Break training into specialized groups
  • Provide documentation and resources for assistance on odd tasks that only come up occasionally

Failure to Take a Comprehensive Approach

Effective electronic health records adoption requires a workflow across the entire organization. That means you need a comprehensive approach to system selection, training, and rollout. Dr. Cliff Bleustein, the global head of Dell’s healthcare consulting, says EHR programs that launch as an IT-only endeavor are unlikely to succeed. For a greater chance of long-term success, include clinical, administrative, and management employees on an EHR implementation team.

As you consider an electronic health record adoption for your office, don’t forget about paper file maintenance. Going electronic doesn’t mean you can shred everything in your office. We recommend that you follow retention guidelines from federal, state, and industry agencies to protect your practice from noncompliance.

How is your Electronic Health Records adoption project progressing?