It’s not as easy as flipping a switch

A neurosurgeon testifies to the House how difficult it is to adopt electronic records:

It took about 1,000 hours to set up the system and a year to purchase and configure the equipment. And he noted, the cost was “fairly significant.”

He told the committee that moving to the new system was particularly difficult on the staff and not everyone was pleased to move to this new practice paradigm. He said staff turnover rate approached 30 percent and produced problems with continuity of patient care.

There needs to be more stories publicizing the difficulties in going paperless. There are indeed long-term benefits, but the transition pains are not insignificant. The policy makers should know that and understand it’s a significant barrier to widespread use.

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