There’s been much said about the physician burnout problem in healthcare. This is linked in part to the fact that doctors are doing more documentation work than ever before due to the compliance with the electronic health record (EHR).
Physicians, studies say, are spending as much as 55% percent of their work day on the EHR, and that is not only costing physicians time away from patients, it’s also costing everyone money. Doctors, of course, make large salaries but are spending much of their day documenting and reviewing records.
One solution that is being presented is medical scribes. These scribes take over much of the load when it comes to EHR, handling the time-consuming clerical tasks and easing the burden on the doctors.
But the development of artificial intelligence (AI) might hold the key to solving the problem. The advancements of technology that can automate documentation through speech recognition, as well as AI handling reviews of relevant clinical information, could take care of much of the EHR concerns.
How soon can this technology be implemented? Well, it’s already here. Market research firm Reaction Data recently surveyed 300 physicians and 62 percent of their respondents say they are already using speech recognition technology in their EHR tasks, although there are still some concerns about accuracy.
But will this actually solve the problem? Some experts actually suggest that AI and technology might be better utilized to support a more patient-centered system, allowing patients to be more active in monitoring their own health care, much like tech has allowed customers in the airline of financial industries to be more hands-on in a self-service capacity.
Whether this does address the problem or not will remain to be seen. But it’s clear that AI will be playing a major role in taking care of our physicians in the near future.
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“Reimagining Clinical Documentation With Artificial Intelligence.” Steven Lin, et al., Mayo Clinic Proceedings, May 2018. Web.
“Health Care’s Physician Burnout (Part 3): Is AI The Answer?” Jacquelyn Hunt, Forbes Technology Council, Forbes, 23 October 2018. Web.
“Survey: 62 Percent of Docs Use Speech Recognition, But Cite Concerns About Accuracy.” Heather Landi, Healthcare Informatics, 26 September 2018. Web.