The EMR blogging world is pretty small. There really aren’t that many of us that write about EMR. There are quite a few blogs that will occasionally write about EMR, but very few that give really good practical advice on EMR implementations.
Well, today I was happy to notice that EMR and HIPAA was listed first on a search for EMR Blogs, and as I looked through the list I saw a lot of really great blogs that I enjoy. One of my favorites from all the way back when I first started blogging as an EMR blog by Dr. Griever.
Michelle, or Dr. Griever if you prefer, was amazingly detailed in her analysis of what she experienced during an EMR implementation. Her initial blogs were a really strong influence on my EMR blogging. I just hoped that I could offer the same sort of detailed analysis and clarity that she did. She was so well written I even forgave her for being Canadian (which isn’t really a problem except for the differences in medicine/insurance).
So, I was sad to come across her blog again today and find a post entitled “Signing Off.” No doubt publishing a blog is a lot of work, so I understand the need to be refocused, but I will miss Michelle’s insights into EMR implementations. She did EMR implementation the right way. My only regret now is that I didn’t read and participate on her blog more regularly. Here’s a portion of what she’s accomplished and some insights from the experience:
The EMR has now been implemented; my practice has been redesigned to meet goals for patient access (wait times for appointments are now routinely same day or next available clinic day; time sitting in the waiting room is <1/2 hour, we use email with patients), quality (routine measurement and monitoring, regular team meetings), and efficiency. We work as an interdisciplinary team now; these are not just “buzz words”, we actually are doing it.
All of us in this primary care team have traveled far along the road to better care for our patients in the past four years, and the EMR has been a key part of this redesign. We will not stop, but I do feel that a large part of the work has now been done. The key issue remaining is that those of us using EMRs continue to function as electronic islands in a sea of paper and systemic inefficiency. We cannot change this from our practices; such a change will take leadership and vision from the people managing our health care system.
The good news is that Michelle will be working on researching EMR implementation and use. I look forward to seeing the research she produces.