EHR usability gets 'F' grade from nurses: 5 study insights

In terms of usability, nurses grade EHRs as an "F" rating and attribute them as a main cause of burnout, according to an April 19 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association 

For the study, a team of researchers from New Haven, Conn.-based Yale School of Medicine, Rochester, Minn.-based Mayo Clinic, Stanford (Calif.) School of Medicine, University of Virginia School of Nursing in Charlottesville and the American Nurses Association analyzed results from a November 2017 survey of 8,638 nurses on EHR usability and burnout. 

Five study insights: 

1. To clock perceptions on EHR usability, the researchers used the System Usability Scale, which is a measure of more than 1,300 other usability studies from various industries. 

2. The average EHR usability score among nurses was 57.6, which the researchers categorized as an "F" grade. 

3. While still an "F" grade, nurses' scores on EHR usability were higher than physicians, who rated EHRs a 45.9 on the System Usability Scale, according to a 2019 American Medical Association-led study. 

4. The researchers analyzed burnout by using the Maslach Burnout Inventory, which examines professional burnout by factors including depersonalization and emotional exhaustion. Forty-two percent of the nurse respondents were burned out, according to the scale. 

5. Nurse participants who were not experiencing burnout scored 3.5 points higher on the System Usability Scale, indicating a relation between EHR usability and burnout among the group of nurses. 


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