Senators form working group to address EHR usability

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Leaders on the Senate health committee are forming a bipartisan, full committee working group to identify ways to improve EHRs.

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), chairman of the Senate health committee, and Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), a ranking member of the Senate health committee, are leading the efforts.

The goals of the working group are to identify ways Congress and the administration can better collaborate to help physicians and hospitals improve care quality and patient safety, facilitate and advance interoperability, empower patients to engage in their care by providing access to their health information and protect patient privacy and security of health information.

"After $28 billion in taxpayer dollars spent subsidizing electronic health records, ‎doctors don't like these electronic medical record systems and say they disrupt workflow, interrupt the doctor-patient relationship and haven’t been worth the effort," said Sen. Alexander. "The goal of this working group is to identify the five or six things we can do to help make the failed promise of electronic health records something that physicians and providers look forward to instead of something they endure."

More articles on interoperability:

Should patients pay for access to their medical data? 
Dr. Karen DeSalvo's 3-step plan for interoperability 
Mount Sinai Health chooses InterSystems HealthShare for interoperability 

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