It seems that electronic health record systems can bring equal amounts of frustration to both patients and physicians alike.

As physicians spend more time trying to input patient data, patients complain that less attention is paid to them.

According to Software Advice, a company that matches software consumers with the most appropriate systems for them, almost one third of medical practices surveyed stated they are replacing their EHR systems with new ones. This is a significant jump from a similar poll done in 2010, when it was 10% less. Though the study is small ( only 385 facilities), its results match the one done by Black Book Market Research this year encompassing 17,000 users.

Complaints inciting a change in vendor included:

  • Problems interfacing with other software programs
  • Lack of integration with mobile devices
  • Difficulty understanding the nuances of the program
  • Lack of support
  • Costs
  • Problem with carrying out meaningful use as recently formulated

The 23% voicing the need for a change confirmed that they wanted a fully integrated system rather than the antiquated system that they are working with currently.

Software Advice confirms that dissatisfaction with current EHR vendors has increased with aggravation stemming from forced upgrades and increased costs linked to them.  The fact that new costs are constantly being generated which are unplanned is causing great consternation as the costs are not budgeted for in the medical practice.

Before falling into a trap with a new vendor, make a list of the requirements and features that you seek in a system and which ones that you do not want.  Discuss the problems leading to a decrease in productivity with more time-consuming steps in the EHR system with your current vendor. You might just reach a satisfactory compromise or the change you were looking for.

After all, it is in the best interest of the vendor to address those problems that you listed and complained about.  Then, you will both be happy.