The meaningful use program has been running long enough that most providers are aware of the negative consequences likely to affect their productivity when they adopt any EHR system. Carefully planning the transition to electronic systems can reduce some of the more disastrous effects but even the most well thought out implementation project will have hiccups along the way.
The productivity of the practice may fall as users get accustomed to new workflows, software and health IT systems. The EHR product may have bugs that have to be worked out, hardware to be updated and some features may have to be customized to suit the needs of the particular clinic. To add to the list of woes, a new study published recently shows that there is a link between dissatisfaction with EHR and employee turnover .
According to the researchers, those providers who were positive about EHR alerts also reported high levels of job satisfaction. Conversely, users who did not find any value in EHR alerts reported significant levels of dissatisfaction and were more likely to leave the practice altogether. These findings should be worrisome to any health organization that is using EHR products. Although managers were aware that EHR dissatisfaction could significantly affect productivity, few expected that it would be so bad as to cause employees leaving the practice.
Managing employee satisfaction with EHRs can be trickier for small practices. Larger hospitals usually have the resources and IT staff to customize or change the software if a large number of users are demanding the change. They also have the leverage with the software provider to demand customization for inclusion of necessary features. Solo practitioners or small clinics on the other hand, are largely on their own. It can be too expensive to switch out providers but neither is it feasible to lose employees since replacing them also puts a strain on resources.
Nevertheless, for practices struggling to retain employees, the study also highlights the solution. Since users who had positive views about the EHR system and health IT in general were less likely to switch jobs, clinics would do well to focus on user awareness and training. When employees are aware of the benefits of EHR alerts and have sufficient training to extract maximum use from the product, they are less likely to leave.
Dovetail dental software is a cloud hosted product that is extremely easy to use even for non-tech savvy personnel. Your clinic can get started with electronic records quickly, allowing you to focus on your practice. For additional information on our cloud-based dental software, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.