Scribes find a place in emergency rooms

St. Louis Post-Dispatch, January 26, 2011
As hospitals switch to electronic medical records, doctors worry about spending more time in front of computers rather than patients. To solve the problem, physicians are turning to an age-old profession — scribes. As Brian Lebo, MD, examined a 71-year-old woman with chest pain and dizziness Monday in the emergency department at DePaul Health Center, scribe Robert Peters stood quietly in the corner typing the woman's answers as Lebo asked when her pain started, what medications she was taking and gathered her family history. The doctor told the woman what might be wrong and what tests he planned to order. And the scribe documented it all. "I can just completely focus on and deal with the patient," Lebo said.

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