Healthcare News & Insights

Study: More doctors using sophisticated EHR systems

As EHR adoption in general grows, the use of more sophisticated EHR systems among office-based physicians is also quickly increasing. 

That’s the message in a new report from researchers affiliated with the Office of Economic Analysis, Evaluation and Modeling at HHS’ Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology.

The main driver for the increased use of advanced EHR technology: Doctors are trying to meet the Meaningful Use objectives required to qualify for federal EHR incentives, according to the report.

In 2012, 72% of office-based physicians had adopted any EHR system, and 40% had adopted a system that allows them to meet at least five Meaningful Use Core objectives. Specifically. the most commonly adopted advanced EHR functions are:

  1. Computerize provider order entry for medication orders (80% of physicians have this capability, up from 65% a year earlier)
  2. The ability to record demographics (79%, up from 72%)
  3. E-prescribing (73%, up from 55%)
  4. Medication allergy lists (68%, up from 57%)
  5. Active medication lists (68%, up from 57%)
  6. Drug interaction checks (67%, up from 51%)
  7. Maintained lists of problems (66%, up from 54%)
  8. Clinical summaries for patients after visits (56%, up from 38%)

The findings in this study are encouraging, especially considering a report from earlier this year which found that many physicians were adopting EHRs but failing to qualify for incentive payments.

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