Physician groups call for EHR education in med school

The American Osteopathic Association has become the latest physician group to advocate for EHR training to be a part of medical students' education.

During its annual House of Delegates meeting in July, the AOA approved a resolution to work with the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine and the American Osteopathic Association of Medical Informatics to increase opportunities for medical students to practice working with EHRs.

Currently, about 64 percent of medical school programs give students access to their EHR system, according to a study in Teaching and Learning in Medicine. The problem, as noted by the Association of American Medical Colleges, is often privacy and security regulations. Firewalls and institutional policies designed to protect patient information often prevent medical students from interacting with EHRs. "In many cases, medical students have become observers of EHRs rather than full-fledged users — if they even get to do that," said Morgan Passiment, AAMC director of information resources policy and programs.

The AOA resolution echoes calls from the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Family Physicians and other organizations for medical schools and teaching hospitals to find a way for students to have more hands-on experience with EHR systems. For example, the Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis, using a grant from the AMA, is developing a teaching EHR with de-identified patient data to train students in EHR use.

More articles on EHRs:

HIMSS: How EHRs can help hospitals reduce mortality rates
"It takes us too long to identify problems": Pew Charitable Trusts director on EHRs
Study: Only 5.8% of hospitals could meet all MU2 requirements

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