6 Common Challenges in EHR Implementation

Healthcare practices and providers have been implementing electronic health record software at an increasing rate, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. As of 2021, 96 percent of all non-federal acute care hospitals and nearly 4 in 5 office-based physicians have implemented a certified EHR system. However, although these cases of initial implementation have been successful, sometimes the initial usage isn’t always easy. Having the time, resources, and cooperation from the entire practice can be a difficult task. 

Here, we outline several potential challenges and barriers you may encounter during EHR implementation. Understanding these common hurdles can help your pediatric practice effectively navigate them and set achievable goals.

1. Technical ability

According to the Morsani College of Medicine of USF Health, a computer’s ability to retrieve and send data throughout healthcare is affected by its age and other factors, such as the area in which the practice is located. Connecting to the system and the internet can be more difficult for a system that is located in a rural setting over an urban region. Make certain the location of your practice will make EHR implementation and usage a non-stressful task for you. Upgrade your plan or find a different internet provider with better connectivity, when possible.

2. Cost of use

Advances in health information technology, such as EHRs, can be expensive in both implementation and usage. Finding the expenses to invest in training, support, and the physical infrastructure itself can be a common barrier, especially for smaller practices. Before making the decision to implement EHRs, it’s important to lay out the funding beforehand.

3. The people

Unfortunately, not everyone is on board with the idea of implementing and using EHRs. There will be patients and providers along the way who may reject EHRs or easily give up on them if there are initial technical malfunctions. Before bringing EHRs into your practice, consider the barrier you may face with patients and coworkers – it’s important to be ready to face each and every opinion. 

4. Workflows

One of the primary goals of implementing EHRs is to establish a more streamlined workflow for your staff. However, if not customized correctly, EHR implementation can disrupt the existing workflow in a practice. To avoid this problem, ensure that your chosen EHR vendor provides a comprehensive demonstration of how the implementation will align with your pediatric practice’s unique needs.

5. Training

During EHR implementation, practices are advised to train their employees in the new workflow processes. Unfortunately, this takes extra time, effort, and resources that some practices may not be able to afford. Before committing to implement EHR implementation, find out exactly how much training should go into the process and only go through with it if your practice is ready to complete it. Adequate training is pivotal to a successful EHR implementation.

Staff training is not just an optional component of EHR implementation; it’s an essential investment in the success and sustainability of your practice. By prioritizing training, you empower your team to leverage the EHR system to its fullest potential, ultimately leading to improved patient care, enhanced efficiency, and compliance with healthcare regulations.

6. Concerns with privacy

According to USF Health, some healthcare providers and patients may be concerned about medical privacies when using EHRs. These concerns may include issues like data loss due to natural disasters or cyberattacks. Before implementing EHRs, seek clarity on the privacy safeguards and protocols integrated into your new system to address these concerns effectively.

EHRs are the key to streamlining operations, identifying efficiencies and gaps in care, and freeing up valuable time for you and your staff. OPs pediatric-specialty EHR offers features designed to help keep your practice’s financial and clinical operations running smoothly so you can focus on what you do best – taking care of your patients. To learn how Office Practicum can help your pediatric practice operate at its best, please reach out and contact us today.

It’s crucial to find an EHR solution that offers the best workflow options for your pediatric practice and can optimize everything that pertains to your specialty.

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