A majority of physicians may have implemented innovative healthcare management solutions like electronic health records, but many may not be using the technology to its full potential, according to a new study.
Researchers from the University of California, San Francisco and several medical groups surveyed state physicians about their technology use and found that 71 percent were using EHRs. However, only 30 percent had implemented systems that would allow them to qualify for the government's meaningful use program.
This initiative was developed as part of the 2009 stimulus package and provides incentives for physicians who use EHRs. However, in order to qualify, doctors must be able to prove that they are using the technology to make meaningful improvements in care quality and efficiency.
Proving quality was the most difficult task for surveyed physicians surveyed. While 61 percent had systems that allowed them to create notes during the course of patient visits, only 45 could develop quality reports based on these notes.
The researchers said that EHRs can help practices make major improvements in quality and efficiency, but systems must be implemented properly. Otherwise, the innovative healthcare management solutions may not deliver any great benefit.