Slight Drop in ENT Productivity With Implementation of EMR

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Slight Drop in ENT Productivity With Implementation of EMR
Slight Drop in ENT Productivity With Implementation of EMR

FRIDAY, Sept. 2, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Otolaryngologists experienced a slight decrease in productivity after implementation of an electronic medical record (EMR) system, according to a study published online Sept. 1 in JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery.

Yarah M. Haidar, M.D., from the University of California-Irvine Medical Center, and colleagues examined the correlation between transitioning to an EMR system and physician productivity in otolaryngology in an observational study conducted at a tertiary care academic ambulatory center. Five practicing otolaryngologists were examined for 12 months before and 12 months after transitioning to a new EMR system.

The researchers found that the monthly mean work relative value units (wRVUs) decreased among all five practitioners, from a mean of 334 before EMR implementation to a mean of 284 after implementation. There was also a decrease in the mean monthly clinic visit volume from 132 to 121. When the physicians were examined separately, only one had a significant decrease in wRVUs; no significant change in wRVUs or clinic visit volume was seen for the other physicians. After clinic, physicians spent an average of 2.1 and 1.9 hours reviewing and editing documentation before and after transition to the EMR system, respectively.

"Transitioning to an EMR system in an ambulatory otolaryngology tertiary care setting slightly decreased physician productivity as measured by wRVUs and clinic visit volume in the 12-month period after implementation in an incentivized compensation system," the authors write.

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