AMA Urges Government to Factor in Usability When Establishing Next Stage of MU Requirements

Physicians who want to implement electronic medical records are frustrated at the government's lack of focus on EMR usability, according to an American Medical News report.

At an April 21 meeting with HHS' Certification/Adoption Workgroup, physicians expressed their concerns over how EMRs can cut into productivity. According to the news report, one internist from Dubuque, Iowa, explained how a primary care physician needs 10 minutes to navigate an EMR to order a routine mammogram, a process which "should take no more than a few seconds of a clinician's time," the internist said.

At the meeting, the American Medical Association proposed several recommendations regarding EMR usability, including the following:

•  Vendors seeking certification for their EMR products should be required to address patient safety issues.
•  EMRs should include automated reporting functions.
•  Reporting functions should incorporate protections established by certified patient safety organizations.
•  The ONC should monitor patient safety issues raised by vendors.
•  Information gained from these processes should be analyzed and used to improve patient safety and usability of EMRs.

Read the news report about EMR usability.

Related Articles on EMRs:
8 Problems Surrounding Meaningful Use
IT Experts, ONC Developing Measures for Testing EHR Usability
Meaningful Use Attestation Calculator Goes Live on CMS Site

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