Dr. Lawrence Gordon, an ENT Surgeon in NY provided a very unique perspective on why EHR dissatisfaction pervades among Providers.
Theory of Amplification
Dr. Gordon talks about EHR as a tool that can be used to amplify intrinsic talent that Doctors possess. It can be likened to the explanation Archimedes gave to the principle of Lever. While Archimedes did not invent the lever, he gave an explanation of the principle involved in his work On the Equilibrium of Planes. The principle of lever was used to design block-and-tackle pulley systems. The goal was to lift objects that would otherwise have been too heavy to move.
In today's terms we see increasing use of Robotics in the manufacturing sector that does the 'heavy lifting', allowing for people to be creative.
In both instances, these are tools that amplify intrinsic talent.
What are you trying to amplify?
Doctors and Clinical Providers want to amplify their experience and empathy. Unfortunately, they seek out EHR to directly amplify these. This is precisely where it breaks down.
The goal must be to use the lever of EHR to create processes and an environment that allows amplification of inherent talent.
To be precise, we must use EHR to:
- Visualize data that allows better clinical decision-making
- Automate health maintenance rules for better patient care and interaction
- Provide focused educational content based on diagnosis and assessment
In other words, strengthen the processes outside of the exam room so that Providers can Amplify their experience and empathy using the data provided by surrounding systems, inside the exam room.
The goal should not be to 'master' a tool, but to use tools to help providers function at high efficiency. Efficiency does not mean clicking buttons and mouse, it means amplifying strengths.
When I was in Dr. Gordon's clinic on a Monday during his lunch break, it suddenly became obvious why his practice looked calm on his busiest day where he typically saw 45 patients.