Physicians Worried Proposed Meaningful Use Will Decrease Productivity

Joe Cantlupe, for HealthLeaders Media , March 8, 2010

Physicians expressed concerns over several of the proposed criteria for meaningful use. In the MGMA questionnaire, 45.9% of the physicians stated the proposed criteria, which would require 80% of all patient requests for an electronic copy of their health information be fulfilled within 48 hours, would be "difficult" or "very difficult" to achieve. Nearly 54% stated that it would be difficult or very difficult to reach the criteria of having 10% of all patients be given electronic access to their health information within 96 hours of the information being available.

In the MGMA analysis, physicians offered several views, elaborating on their concerns, according to MGMA records.

"For the various percentage requirements, obtaining number or data through an EHR will not be the problem," one physician wrote. "It will be tracking the denominator data that will be difficult since it may require manually tracking to calculate the percentage."

"Given there is not an EHR out there that currently meets all the criteria of meaningful use, 2011 is not enough time to get a new/upgraded system in place and adopt all the new processes that will be required for meaningful use," stated another physician.

"I have great concerns about the feasibility of complying with the [requirements]," opined another physician. "So much so, that I am re-focusing efforts with our physicians on the long-term benefits of EHR for improved workflow, patient safety, productivity, etc. and not at all on qualifying for the stimulus funds since the ability to do so seems very questionable at best."

MGMA conducted the research in January and February 2010, and data include feedback from 445 respondents representing providers in medical group practices throughout the United States.

Joe Cantlupe is a senior editor with HealthLeaders Media Online.

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