AMA town hall forum aims to 'Break the Red Tape' surrounding EHR regulation

The AMA aimed to break the red tape surrounding the federal regulation of EHRs during its July 20 town hall event, which was webcast live and included statements, anecdotes, thoughts and policy suggestions from frustrated physicians regarding EHR policy. Participants were encouraged to tweet using '#FixEHR' as the event took place.



 "We know there are many frustrations with electronic health records," Steven J. Stack, MD, president of AMA, said in his opening statement at the event. "That they have so much potential to improve healthcare, improve quality, improve our efficiency, improve patient engagement, and yet that's not the current state of reality. Our experience as physicians is often falling far short of the promise I think we all hope we will eventually reach with these wonderful potential tools."


 In addition to airing grievances and citing use cases where EHRs failed patients, the AMA also wanted to encourage positive reinforcement of the elements of EHR that do work well to send a clear message to policymakers about physician experience with the technology. Comments and stories touched on topics such as workflow challenges, the quality of clinical documentation using EHRs, meaningful use and the difficulties of attestation, vendor issues and EHR security.

"We use technology more prolifically than virtually anyone in society," Dr. Stack said in his closing remarks. "But we make the distinction that we use it when it works. And what we're hoping to do is to get these stories to share with our policymakers so we can work together constructively."

Watch the full town hall presentation here.

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