January 27, 2010
Cision, the media list management people (they publish the Bacon’s directories), has just published an interesting white paper titled “When in Doubt, Don’t Send It,” the report argues that most media distribution is not done in a targeted manner. One result is that journalists find their email boxes filled every morning with hundreds of unwanted news releases and story pitches.
The report notes that the short-sighted tactic of sending “shotgun” emails to hundreds of hundreds of reporters without careful screening is likely to alienate many reporters.
January 22, 2010
I am continually surprised by the fact that my eye doctor, my dentist and my cat’s veterinarian (all of whom work in very small practices) all use electronic records, but my family physician does not. My PCP works in a large, hospital-based medical group, just the kind of organization that should be investing in this technology. To be fair, the group now enables patients to email all its physicians, however, the response time has been pretty slow.
President Obama has made a commitment to give every American access to an EHR by 2014. Is this goal attainable?
No, according to Gartner’s new report, “Healthcare Providers and Governments Seek the Benefits and Address the IT Implications of EHRs,” http://www.gartner.com/technology/research.jsp The report, published December 7, 2009, predicts that “by 2015,despite the relaxation of Stark laws and the ARRA incentives, less than 15% of small U.S. physician practices will have implemented an EHR.”
The report makes several other interesting points.
1. Some 63% of the U.S.’s approximately 941,000 physicians are employed within small practices, (practices with five or fewer physicians), while less than 4% of these physicians have fully implemented a comprehensive EHR.
2. The current system of paying for care creates a negative incentive for physicians to adopt EHRs, because physicians are paid primarily for the number of encounters, and not for care coordination, the lack of errors or quality measures. General rage by physicians over decreases in fees and payers’ micromanaging their decisions is often directed at the EHR as a symbol of outside control of their practices.
The last point is very well taken. A number of large health insurers have launched initiatives to promote wider use of EHRs, however, they have yet to get much traction with docs or patients. Right now, insurers seem to be investing more time on having claims submitted electronically. Currently about 25% of all claims are still submitted on paper.