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Streamlining EMR Design for the real benefit of physicians

Abstract: Delivering effectiveness in your tasks through an EMR is quite challenging. Most of the EMR out there in the market focus on providing maximum number of features rather than the benefits actually gained by the users. Focusing on benefits first, Binary Spectrum provides an overview of the challenges in the EMR design and what can be done to overcome them.

Real requirements have constantly been ignored in an EMR design. Understanding the fact that physicians are performing their tasks under high time pressure and in a demanding environment, EMR is not just meant to boast about improved efficiency, more time for patient care or long term financial benefits. Instead it should focus on foremost points that are usually missed out like facing process challenges, having lesser customization instead of just providing customization facility, having straightforward tabs wherein minimal entry would populate the entire report or information.

Any challenges or complexities in EMR design can be overcome by considering simple basic requirements that are usually missed out in the haphazard of loading the system with extensive features. The following are some of the main requirements contributing to a successful EMR design:
·          It should be simple, straightforward with less complexity
·          It should bring in familiarity to avoid excess training
·          It should have consistency to help lower the learning curve
·          Should have appropriate fonts and size of content used
·          Appropriate colors should be used to convey precisely
·          It should be cognitive
·          Proper terminologies should describe the message
·          Instructions should be well handled
·          Should involve less documentation and data entry
The list can go on. However, all these drastically help the user to work lesser time in documenting in the system and spend more time in looking up patients for their care and safety. Any error made by users directly affects the potential safety of the patient. If attention is paid to these major requirements then the number of errors at present would reduce drastically. Patient safety would then effectively come into picture when physicians don’t forget a task or overlook some critical data or prescribe any wrong medication.  

In an EMR design, the user should not be led to waste time thinking and searching for tabs. Instead the design should provide transparency wherein it’s convenient and consistent for him to perform actions quickly in just a click. Overall, if physicians gain from using an effective system, the purpose of EMR is achieved.


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