4 recommendations for curbing EHR-related physician burnout

Researchers from the University of Florida looked at dozens of studies on record-related burnout to come up with solutions, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association.

Provider burnout is among the most disruptive forces in healthcare. Researchers from Gainesville-based UF analyzed 35 studies to look for common threads and offer recommendations, according to a March 29 news release on the study.

Four recommendations for reducing EHR burnout:

  1. Share the load with office staff.
    A shared inbox can allow office staff to tackle questions that don't need provider input, like insurance questions.

  2. Revisit policies that can lower documentation.
    Private insurers can launch initiatives that reduce documentation requirements. Similar efforts have been made by CMS.

  3. Have an IT support team.
    Physicians may not know about time-saving features like templates or bookmarks. Having a team provide that support can mitigate time on the EHR.

  4. Collaborate on design.
    More input from physicians who use the EHRs is needed in designing models and selecting which EHR to use.

"Having [providers] do so much clerical work doesn't make sense," said Lisa Merlo, PhD, associate professor of psychiatry and the director of wellness programs at the UF College of Medicine. "In order to improve the healthcare experience for everyone, we need to help them focus more on the actual practice of medicine."

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