Electronic health records (EHRs) are meant to make the practice of medicine more efficient, but new evidence indicates they could be increasing the administrative workload on physicians.
According to a study published in the International Journal of Health Services, the average physician spends 16.6 percent of his or her time on non-patient-related paperwork. But those who use EHRs were found to spend a bit more time (17.2 percent) on administrative tasks.
Interestingly, those who used a combination of EHRs and paper records spent even more time (18 percent), while those who used only paper records spent the least amount of time (15.5 percent), the researchers noted.
Although the data collected from 4,720 physicians dates back to 2008, the researchers claim that the current climate of incentive-based healthcare, the rise of accountable care organizations and other insurance-related matters is steadily increasing the volume of paperwork.