Fighting provider burnout and staffing shortages with intake note technology

Blog Posts  |  21 June 2022

Written by: Tina Joros

EHR documentation can account for up to 50% of a provider’s day, often accomplished after hours, during clinicals and sometimes before the clinic opens. This can contribute to exhaustion, depersonalization, and a sense of ineffectiveness – all symptoms of burnout. Today’s healthcare staffing shortages can often exacerbate this problem.

Administrative support staff responsible for scheduling appointments, ensuring patients complete intake questionnaires, and completing check-in, are difficult to hire: a consequence of both the pandemic and the “great resignation,” necessitating that healthcare provider practices find ways to do more with less or suffer the consequences.

Provider burnout costs healthcare $4.6 billion

Provider burnout is a serious concern that affects quality of care and patient outcomes. It also contributes to the growing cost of healthcare through impersonal care, accidental misdiagnoses, inaccurate billing/coding, and cumbersome care navigation – to the tune of an estimated $4.6 billion per year.

Several initiatives to mitigate burnout exist, including the presence of Chief Wellness Officers at large health systems and the American Medical Association’s Joy in Medicine program.

Trends to mitigate burnout include:

  • Measures to improve working environments
  • Initiatives that encourage politicians to consult with providers when policies are created
  • Creating positive learning environments for healthcare teams

Unfortunately, technology can sometimes produce unintended pain points, but the right workflows can also help to alleviate them.

Reducing provider chart notes with technology

In a collective attempt to improve patient care, reduce documentation burden, and fight burnout, electronic health records (EHRs) are investing in UX programs and becoming more provider-friendly. Providers are becoming creative in hiring virtual medical scribes to write notes, and transcription via voice recognition tools are appearing in more offices. Health tech companies whose solutions integrate with EHRs are striving for tighter integrations that can further reduce paperwork requirements for patients and data entry for clinical staff.

Health Note, selected as the June 2022 Allscripts App of the Month, advances digital patient intake by directly integrating into Altera TouchWorks® EHR, Allscripts Professional EHR and Allscripts® Practice Management with a “chatbot” that asks patients focused, dynamic and conversational intake questions that a provider would ask. Answers are written to related discrete fields in the EHR, completing up to 80%+ of patient charting ahead of a visit. Healthcare providers are then empowered to confirm information during a patient encounter rather than inefficiently gathering, organizing, and documenting patient data at the same time, saving an average of 5-10 minutes per clinical encounter, or 1.5-3 hours per day if a provider sees 20 patients per day.

To learn more about Health Note, join the upcoming App of the Month webinar featuring mutual customer, Springfield Clinic, on Wednesday June 29th at 1 PM EDT. Register here.

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