Without much fanfare or planning, scribes have entered the scene in hundreds of clinics and emergency rooms. Physicians who use them say they feel liberated from the constant note-taking that modern electronic health records systems demand. Indeed, many of those doctors say that scribes have helped restore joy in the practice of medicine, which has been transformed — for good and for bad — by digital record-keeping. "Having the scribe has been life-changing," said Dr. Jennifer Sewing, a family medicine practitioner in St. Louis, who used to spend late nights at her computer finishing electronic patient charts. Now, she can relax with her family or go to bed instead.