Understanding Clinical Processes After Implementing EMRs: Q&A With Ravi Sharma, CEO of 4Medica

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Ravi Sharma, CEO of 4Medica, a company that develops integrated medical records, discusses the biggest pitfall hospitals fall into after implementing electronic medical records and how hospitals can overcome this challenge.

Q: What is one of the most common mistakes hospitals make in adopting EMRs  and what can be done to remedy those mistakes?

Mr. Ravi Sharma: The biggest mistake hospitals make is not fully understanding processes that will allow physicians to take advantage of the technology. The assumption is that there was nothing but manual processes in place prior to deploying electronic medical records. In the nursing area, there were forms being filled out and notes being written by hand. Now you deploy technology that let's nurses take notes by the bedside and put information into a system.

There are many compounds in adopting these new technical processes. For example, a nurse may be taking notes by a patient's bedside into a system. He or she now has to log in, go through 14 or 15 screens to find the patient's chart and enter information. The nurse is now saying 'It used to take me less than a minute to put it on paper, and now it takes 10 minutes to put into computer.' So now, physicians and nurses are complaining that productivity has gone down. The manual transition onto an electronic or automated system is the biggest issue.

There is a certain amount of pre-work hospitals need to do to train staff in using the technology. This is important in the success of the adoption of IT. Understanding the difficulties with IT adoption and creating technologies and workflows that make it easier for physicians and clinicians to utilize is essential. Hospitals have to take into account the training, process change and selection of technology in implementing HIT.

Learn more about 4Medica.

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