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All Things HIT

Apr 29 2012   11:32AM GMT

Physicians’ online views a mismatch to behavior!



Posted by: AllinHIT
EHR adoption, EHR training

Generally speaking, physicians, like most of us, can sometimes be an enigma. This was certainly evident after reading the Joint Survey of Physician Digital Behavior study. This survey conducted by the San Franciso based ON24 organization and MedData Group based in Boston, surveyed 970 physicians about their online behavior/attitude and use of technology. The survey results directly mirror the same mindset which exist when it comes to physicians adopting Electronic Health Record software, “it makes sense but I don’t want to do it”. Now before my physician friends get all riled up, I am generally speaking. I’m betting that if you are a physician reading this blog, you too are the exception. However, looking at the healthcare industry, physicians are definitely the last holdout in adopting technology.

Lets look at one result of the survey and how it relates to EHR’s. The survey reveals 84% prefer to attend continuing medical education (CME) training online. However, only 6.4% actually participate in these virtual events, and only 18.5% do it often. This reveals a huge gap in their preferences versus their usage. 75.5% of the respondents realized virtual events, webcasts are increasing in acceptance and 91% of them see the benefits of having them virtual. However, when it comes to EHR training, physicians rarely prefer that type of training, regardless if its at little cost, or in some instances, free! Instead, they want a physical trainer in their office, although they rarely want to pay for those services. Most feeling that it should be included in the cost of the EHR, as oppose, to a separate line item.

The gap between physician views and behavior, just don’t apply to the healthcare industry, nor to just physicians. I think of my own mother who has an understanding of the advantages of having online resources for looking up ailments, communicating with senior communities all over the world, skypeing with the grandchildren, etc. However, this understanding does not translate into the act of doing. I believe these gaps will narrow as technology grows within every industry, every household (some don’t have access!), and of course, within the physicians office!

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