Author Interviews, Electronic Records, Pharmacology / 08.12.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Bernard Esquivel Zavala, MD, PhD, MHA GenXys Chief Medical Officer MedicalResearch.com: What is the mission of GenXys? Response: Our mission at GenXys is to tailor the right treatment for each individual patient at the right time. GenXys founders, including Professors Pieter Cullis and Martin Dawes, were heavily involved in the precision medicine field from the very beginning, and they noticed a functional gap between the expectations and the actual clinical implementation of precision medicine Particularly, when it came to, at the time, the new field of pharmacogenetics. Their solution was to provide a comprehensive, user-friendly platform that organizes all patient data relevant to prescribing to provide the safest and most appropriate personalized prescribing options. Simply put, GenXys’ solutions were made by clinicians, for clinicians. The GenXys software suite collects patient information and categorizes that information, including pharmacogenetic data, based on clinical relevance and runs it through advanced condition -based algorithms to provide real time accurate prescribing options. It makes my life as a clinician easier and safer and gives me the confidence that I am not practicing ‘trial and error’ prescribing. Ideally, every healthcare provider should be using a real time medication decision support solution like ours, and not just for pharmacogenetic test results. Pharmacogenomics is just one piece. In fact, our core product, TreatGx™ can run with or without pharmacogenomics. Let's say that you've run it without pharmacogenomics, meaning that you are using this tool to organize and rapidly identify how biophysical factors, liver function, kidney function, comorbidities, and drug-drug interactions may impact the medication you're about to prescribe to your patient. This functionality alone is incredibly helpful. In fact, the factors I just mentioned likely account for 95% of the reasons why a patient does not respond to a particular medication or might have an adverse drug reaction. But the TreatGx platform will also highlight when the evidence supports bringing pharmacogenomic information into the mix. The right approach is bringing all those relevant clinical, biochemical, and molecular factors closer to the provider which will ultimately foster personalization. We will start treating the individual instead of the disease(s). As with any new technology, there are barriers to precision prescribing. This includes educational and emotional barriers. It’s important to educate providers and keep them up to date to help them understand the power that precision prescribing can bring into their practice—and the limitations—to set the right level of expectation. The Human Genome Project was finished in 2000, and there was a lot of buzz about pharmacogenomics even back in 2003. The field got a lot of traction in 2015. So, everyone thought, "Oh, this is going to be groundbreaking and quite disruptive. From now on my prescription is going to be a hundred percent accurate and safe." But it's not quite the whole story. Pharmacogenomics has to be considered as another piece of the puzzle. It's like saying that by having an MRI, you're curing cancer. It's just another piece of the treatment puzzle. There are also emotional barriers, where ego can factor into a decision. It can be uncomfortable for a physician to say, "I don't know this. Let me check it out. Let me explore it further, review, and come back to you." It's easier to say if I don't know it, that it doesn't work or isn’t relevant, rather than exposing yourself. And so that, in terms of the emotional piece, I would say is a big component. We can tackle the emotional component that element by fostering education and bringing education closer to providers. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Electronic Records, JAMA, Pediatrics, Primary Care / 09.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Lisa Rotenstein, MD, MBA Assistant Medical Director Population Health and Faculty Wellbeing Department of Medicine Brigham and Women's Hospital MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Our previous work in JAMA Internal Medicine demonstrated significant differences in time spent on the electronic health record (EHR) by specialty, and specifically showed that primary care clinicians spent significantly more total and after-hours time on the EHR than surgical and medical specialty counterparts. Primary care clinicians spent twice as long as surgical colleagues on notes, and received more than twice as many messages from team-mates, five times as many patient messages, and fifteen times as many prescription messages each day. Given these findings, the heavy administrative burden placed on primary care clinicians, and previous data about burnout among primary care clinicians, we wanted to better understand differences in time spent on the EHR among the different types of primary care clinicians. (more…)
Author Interviews, Duke, Electronic Records, Health Care Systems, JAMA / 20.04.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Eugenia McPeek Hinz MD MS FAMIA Associate CMIO - DHTS Duke University Health System MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Clinician burnout rates have hovered around 50% for much of the past decade.  Burnout is a significant concern in healthcare for its effects on care givers and associated downstream adverse implications on patient care for quality and safety. The ubiquitous presence of Electronic Health Records (EHR) along with the increased clerical components and after hours use has been a significant concern for contributing to provider burnout.  (more…)
Education, Electronic Records, Nursing / 10.03.2021

medical-technology-nursingFor many years now, professional nursing has held a unique place in the American health care system. Nurses make up one of the largest health care professions in the U.S. with more than 3.1 million nurses working in diverse fields and settings. Although most nurses work in health care settings like hospitals, a nurse’s expertise expands well beyond the hospital walls. Working on their own and alongside other healthcare professionals, nurses promote the health of families, individuals, and communities. Nurses have always played an important role in healthcare settings. However, their role has changed a lot over the years. In the past, nurses had extraordinarily little formal medical training. In fact, nurses learned the medical skills they needed from their mothers or other women in the nursing profession. Today, the nursing profession has changed for the better. Not only are there extensive training programs available for nurses, but this role now comes with a level of prestige that was not there before. And this is not the only thing that has altered. Technology has also played a huge role in changing this profession for the better. Keep reading below to find out about the history of nursing and how technology has changed the role of nursing:

How Nursing Has Changed Over Time

Time has done a lot for many career paths. However, the nursing profession has seen more changes than most. Here are some of the ways the nursing profession has changed over time: Training – in the past, nurses were not required to have any formal education. However, nowadays nurses are no longer able to care for patients without passing the correct certification first. Setting – many years ago, nurses would take care of people in their homes or on the battlefield. Although some nurses still care for patients in their homes, nowadays, most nurses work in a hospital setting. Responsibilities – nursing responsibilities have come a long way from the early days when they used to look a lot like a household chore list. The change in responsibilities for nurses stems from several changes in the profession, including the changing views of women, more comprehensive training, and the growing demand for medical professionals. Culture – in the 20th century, nursing culture was known as being mainly made up of females who had a small amount of medical knowledge. While nursing culture has not changed completely, it has changed a lot over the years. In fact, research suggests that more men than ever are choosing to train in this profession. Patient care – patient care is more important than ever before. The advancements in technology have created an environment that makes patient care more helpful and efficient for patients. These advancements have altered almost every industry in the U.S. and the medical field is no different. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Cost of Health Care, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Electronic Records, JAMA, Technology / 04.03.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Carlo Giovanni Traverso, MB, BChir, PhD Associate Physician, Brigham and Women's Hospital Assistant Professor, Peter RChaiMDMMS Emergency Medicine Physician and Medical Toxicologist Harvard Medical School Brigham and Women's Hospital Department of Medicine   Dr-Spot-HealthCare-Assistant.jpgMedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are some of the functions that Dr. Spot can facilitate? Response: During the COVID-19 pandemic, we wanted to consider innovative methods to provide additional social distance for physicians evaluating low acuity individuals who may have COVID-19 disease in the emergency department. While other health systems had instituted processes like evaluating patients from outside of emergency department rooms or calling patients to obtain a history, we considered the use of a mobile robotic system in collaboration with Boston Dynamics to provide telemedicine triage on an agile platform that could be navigated around a busy emergency department. Dr. Spot was built with a camera system to help an operator navigate it through an emergency department into a patient room where an on-board tablet would permit face-to-face triage and assessment of individuals. (more…)
Author Interviews, Electronic Records, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Social Issues / 22.09.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Hailey Miller, PhD, RN Postdoctoral Associate Duke University School of Nursing Stephen P. Juraschek, MD PhD Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?   Response: Digital tools, such as the electronic medical record (EMR), are increasingly utilized to identify and recruit participants for clinical trials. These strategies offer a strong opportunity to increase recruitment yields, however, our previous work has demonstrated that patient portal users are disproportionately White, and therefore utilizing these strategies may contribute to the under-representation of Black Americans in clinical research. This study examined multiple recruitment strategies, including EMR-based strategies and other non-EMR strategies, such as community mailing, Facebook advertisement and newspaper advertisement, to understand if recruitment strategies influenced the demographic composition of trial participants. Given our previous finding that patient portal users are disproportionately White, one of our EMR-based strategies included postal mailing to individuals without a patient portal. (more…)
ASCO, Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Electronic Records / 30.05.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Debra A. Patt, MD, PhD, MBA, FASCO Editor-in-chief of the Journal of Clinical Oncology - Clinical Cancer Informatics Medical oncologist at Texas Oncology, and US Oncology Research Breast Cancer Committee member MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Cancer care is increasing in complexity with differentiation of cancer subtypes, new treatments, and treatment sequences and combinations.  Complying with evidence based therapy has become an increasing challenge.  We see that compliance with guideline based care across the country is highly variable. Our study evaluated an electronic health record based Clinical Decision Support System to facilitate compliance with evidence based guidelines--or pathways--to deliver care to adult patients with cancer. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cost of Health Care, Electronic Records / 20.03.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Rohit Bishnoi, M.D. Division of Hematology and Oncology Department of Medicine University of Florida Gainesville, FL MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: National Healthcare expenditure was $3.6 trillion in 2018 and 17.7% of Gross Domestic Product. Redundant laboratory testing is one part of this problem that is more pronounced in hospitalized patients as they are often seen by multiple physicians from the time of admission till discharge. This added burden on the US health care system leads to increased costs, decreased patient satisfaction, and unnecessary phlebotomy. It also leads to iatrogenic anemia over time and unnecessary transfusions. The Choosing Wisely initiative recommendation from the Society of Hospital Medicine, Society for the Advancement of Blood Management, and the Critical Care Societies Collaborative have recommended avoiding repetitive labs. As one of the physicians in the division of hospital medicine at the University of Florida (UF) Health Shands hospital, we encountered this problem frequently where a patient will get multiple HbA1c or lipid profiles or iron studies during the same hospital stay without any clear clinical indication. Most often these tests were ordered by different physicians seeing the same patient and not realizing that either the test has already been ordered or sometimes it is related to practice pattern of physicians. We often heard complaints about this from our nursing and laboratory staff and, most importantly by patients themselves. (more…)
Author Interviews, Compliance, Electronic Records, JAMA, University of Pennsylvania / 05.03.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Alexander C. Fanaroff, MD, MHS Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Cardiovascular Medicine University of Pennsylvania MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: This is a secondary analysis of the ARTEMIS, a cluster randomized trial of copayment assistance for P2Y12 inhibitors in patients that had myocardial infarction. One of the primary endpoints of ARTEMIS was persistence with P2Y12 inhibitors: Did the patient continue to take a P2Y12 inhibitor over the entire 1 year following MI? In ARTEMIS, we captured persistence data in two ways, patient report and pharmacy fill records. What we did in this study was to look at the agreement between persistence as measured by these two methods. (more…)
Abuse and Neglect, Electronic Records, Yale / 15.11.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Edward R. Melnick, MD, MHS Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine Program Director, Yale-VA Clinical Informatics Fellowship Program Principal Investigator, EMBED Trial Network Yale School of Medicine New Haven, CT 06519  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: We know that physicians are frustrated with their EHRs and that EHRs are a driver of burnout. This is the first study to measure these issues nationally. We included a standardized metric of technology from other industries (System Usability Scale, SUS; range 0-100) on the AMA’s 2017 physician burnout survey. This metric has been used in >1300 other studies so we can compare where the EHR’s usability is to other everyday technologies. We are also able to measure the relationship between physicians’ perception of their EHR’s usability and the likelihood they are burned out. (more…)
Allergies, Author Interviews, Electronic Records / 13.11.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Sonam Sani MD Allergy & Immunology Fellow NYU Winthrop Hospital MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Penicillin allergy label removal is becoming more common. Studies have shown that while 10% of the general population report an allergy to penicillin, after testing only 1% truly have an allergy. Allergists have the ability to evaluate patient’s for penicillin allergy by performing skin tests and oral challenges. However, even when people test negative for penicillin allergy, they still face barriers to having the label removed. We are noting more and more that despite having negative testing, upon further encounters, our patients still have their penicillin allergy label. (more…)
Annals Internal Medicine, Author Interviews, Electronic Records / 24.09.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: John (Xuefeng) Jiang PhD Professor and Plante Moran Faculty Fellow Eli Broad College of Business Accounting & Information Systems Michigan State University East Lansing, MI MedicalResearch.com: How did you get interested in this issue? Response: This is the third project of our data breach trilogy. We first examined which healthcare providers (focusing on hospitals) more likely suffer from a data breach. We documented large hospitals, despite their resources, are more likely to experience a data breach. Some hospitals experienced multiple incidents (https://jamanetwork.altmetric.com/details/18464149). The findings made us wonder what happened? Besides size, what other factors contribute to data breaches? Based on detailed event descriptions, we documented the circumstances under which each data breach occurred (https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/article-abstract/2715158). We found more than half of data breaches could be attributed to healthcare providers’ internal mistakes or negligence (e.g., forgot to encrypt laptop computers, used cc instead of bcc in emailing patients, didn’t revoke former employees’ login credentials after employment terminated) rather than external forces (e.g., hacking). We also found mobile devices (e.g. laptop computers, usb drives) are associated with most data breaches than paper records or network servers. Our results suggest if healthcare providers strengthen their internal control and limit the use of mobile device might be effective ways to reduce data breach risks.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Electronic Records, Emergency Care, JAMA / 19.09.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Carl Berdahl, MD, MS Emergency Physician and Health Services Researcher CEDARS-SINAI West Hollywood CA MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The length of a doctor’s note is taken account when determining how much a doctor or medical center is paid for a visit. However, in the digital era, a doctor can generate large amounts of text with just a few keystrokes. Given this incentive structure, we were concerned doctors’ notes might be inaccurate in certain sections of the chart that are important for billing. We used observers to determine how accurately doctors’ notes reflected the interactions between patients and physicians. (more…)
Author Interviews, Electronic Records / 02.07.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ming Tai-Seale, PhD, MPH Professor Department of Family Medicine and Public Health University of California San Diego School of Medicine  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The electronic health record (EHR) potentially creates a 24/7 work environment for physicians. Its impact on physicians’ wellness has become a challenge for most health care delivery organizations. Understanding the relationships between physicians’ well-being and “desktop medicine”1 work in the EHR and work environment is critical if burnout is to be addressed more effectively. (more…)
Author Interviews, Electronic Records, JAMA, Pediatrics, Primary Care / 07.05.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Cari McCarty, PhD Research Professor, UW Investigator, Seattle Children’s Research Institute  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Adolescence is a time when teens begin to take charge of their health, but it is also a time when they can be prone to health risk behaviors, such as insufficient physical activity, poor sleep, and substance use. We were interested in whether using an electronic health risk screening tool in primary care settings could improve healthcare and health for adolescents.  The tool was designed to provide screening as well as motivational feedback directly to adolescents, in addition to clinical decision support for the healthcare clinician.  We conducted a trial with 300 adolescent patients where one group received the screening tool prior to their health checkup, and the other group received usual care. (more…)
Author Interviews, Compliance, Electronic Records, Lung Cancer, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 07.02.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Samuel Cykert, MD Professor of Medicine and Director of the Program on Health and Clinical Informatics UNC School of Medicine, and Associate Director for Medical Education, NC AHEC Program Chapel Hill, NC MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Reports going as far back as the early 1990’s through reports published very recently show that Black patients with early stage, curable lung cancer are not treated with aggressive, curative treatments as often as White patients. These type of results have been shown in other cancers also. It’s particularly important for lung cancer because over 90% of these patients are  dead within 4 years if left untreated. In 2010, our group published a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association that showed that Black patients who had poor perceptions of communication (with their provider), who did not understand their prognosis with vs. without treatment, and who did not have a regular source of care ( a primary care doctor) were much less likely to get curative surgery. Also our results suggested that physicians who treated lung cancer seemed less willing to take the risk of aggressive treatments in treating Black patients (who they did not identify with as well) who had other significant illnesses. Because of the persisting disparities and our 2010 findings, we worked with a community group, the Greensboro Health Disparities Collaborative to consider potential solutions.  As these omissions were not overt or intentional because of race on the part of the patients or doctors, we came up with the idea that we needed transparency to shine light on treatment that wasn’t progressing and better communication to ensure that patients were deciding on good information and not acting on mistrust or false beliefs.  We also felt the need for accountability – the care teams needed to know how things were going with patients and they needed to know this according to race. To meet these specifications, we designed a system that received data from electronic health records about patients’ scheduled appointments and procedures. If a patient missed an appointment this umbrella system triggered a warning. When a warning was triggered, a nurse navigator trained specially on communication issues, re-engaged the patient to bring him/her back into care. In the system, we also programmed the timing of expected milestones in care, and if these treatment milestones were not reached in the designated time frame, a physician leader would re-engage the clinical team to consider the care options. Using this system that combined transparency through technology, essentially our real time warning registry, and humans who were accountable for the triggered warnings, care improved for both Black and White patients and the treatment disparity for Black patients was dramatically reduced. In terms of the numbers, at baseline, before the intervention, 79% of White patients completed treatment compared to 69% of Black patients. For the group who received the intervention, the rate of completed treatment for White patients was 95% and for Black patients 96.5%.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Electronic Records, Mental Health Research / 18.12.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Katharine Phillips, M.D. Professor of Psychiatry DeWitt Wallace Senior Scholar Residency Research Director Department of Psychiatry Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University Attending Psychiatrist, New York-Presbyterian Hospital Adjunct Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior Alpert Medical School of Brown University Weill Cornell Psychiatry Specialty Center Weill Cornell Medicine I NewYork-Presbyterian MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
  • Electronic prescribing of medication by clinicians is widespread; it is required in many institutions and in some states. Electronic prescribing systems commonly use computerized decision support algorithms that give prescribers automated warnings or alerts at the time of prescribing if the system identifies a potential prescribing error.
  • Some prior studies suggest that electronic prescribing warnings/alerts may reduce prescribing errors and thus can be clinically useful. However, other prior studies caution that these alerts may have substantial limitations.
  • Despite the importance of this topic, relatively few studies have examined the accuracy of automated prescribing warnings in electronic prescribing systems; to our knowledge, no prior study has focused primarily on prescribing of medications for psychiatric conditions.
  • This report presents results from a survey of members of the American Society of Clinical Psychopharmacology (ASCP), a specialty society that advances the science and practice of clinical psychopharmacology, regarding automated warnings generated by electronic prescribing systems.
(more…)
Author Interviews, Compliance, Electronic Records, JAMA, Ophthalmology / 18.12.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Michael Vincent Boland, M.D., Ph.D. Glaucoma Center of Excellence Director of Information Technology, Wilmer Eye Institute Associate Professor of Ophthalmology Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine Baltimore, Maryland MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Effective medications are available to treat glaucoma and prevent or stop vision loss.
Unfortunately, patients frequently do not use the eye drops as prescribed, oftentimes simply
because they forget to. Since patient medications are now managed via electronic health
records (EHRs), we built a system to deliver automated reminders to patients using the patient
portal to our EHR. We found that the majority (75%, 66 of 88) of participants that received these reminders found them to be useful, and about half (47%, 41 of 88) the participants wanted to
continue using the reminders after the study ended
(more…)
Author Interviews, Electronic Records / 06.12.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Rebekah L Gardner MD Associate Professor of Medicine Warren Alpert Medical School Brown University Providence, Rhode Island MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Burnout profoundly affects physicians, their patients, and the health care system.The role of technology in physician burnout, specifically health information technology (HIT), is not as well characterized as some of the other factors. We sought to understand how stress related to HIT use predicts burnout among physicians. Our main findings are that 70% of electronic health record (EHR) users reported HIT-related stress, with the highest prevalence in primary care-oriented specialties. We found that experiencing HIT-related stress independently predicted burnout in these physicians, even accounting for other characteristics like age, gender, and practice type. In particular, those with time pressures for documentation or those doing excessive “work after work” on their EHR at home had approximately twice the odds of burnout compared to physicians without these challenges. We found that physicians in different specialties had different rates of stress and burnout. (more…)
Author Interviews, Electronic Records, JAMA, Outcomes & Safety / 06.11.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: "Portable Information station, nurse, computer, hand wipes, 9th floor, Virginia Mason Hospital, Seattle, Washington, USA" by Wonderlane is licensed under CC BY 2.0Timothy Ryan PhD This work was performed while Dr. Ryan was at Precera Biosciences, 393 Nichol Mill Lane Frankluin, Tennessee  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?  Response: The study design is quite simple.  We measured medication concentrations in patients, then compared empirically detected medications with prescribed medications in each patient’s medical record.  We used this information to estimate how many prescribed medications patients had actually taken and how often they took medications that were not in their medical record.  The later comparison is a particularly novel measure of the number and types of medications taken by patients unbeknownst to healthcare providers who use the medical record as a guide to patient care. Further, the test was performed in blood and not urine, so we could obtain an estimate of how often patients were in range for medications that they did take – at least for medications where the therapeutic range for blood concentrations are well established. In sum, we found that patients do not take all of their medications, the medical records are not an accurate indicator of the medications that patients ingest, and that even when taken as prescribed, medications are often out of therapeutic range.  The majority of out-of-range medications were present at subtherapeutic levels.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Cost of Health Care, Critical Care - Intensive Care - ICUs, Electronic Records, JAMA / 03.11.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Deborah D. Gordon, MBA Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government Harvard Kennedy School Cambridge, Massachusetts MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Against the backdrop of rising health care costs, and the increasing share of those costs that consumers bear, studies show people are interested in finding health care cost information and engaging with their providers on issues of cost. We were interested in learning to what extent, if any, discussion or consideration of cost would be documented in electronic health records. Using machine learning techniques to extract data from unstructured notes, we examined 46,146 narrative clinical notes from ICU admissions. We found that approximately 4% of admissions had at least one note with financially relevant content. That financial content included documentation of cost as a barrier to adhering to treatment prior to admission, and as a consideration in treatment and discharge planning.    (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Electronic Records, JAMA / 07.07.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Li Zhou, MD, PhD, FACMI Associate Professor of Medicine Division of General Internal Medicine and Primary Care Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School Somerville, MA 02145 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Documentation is one of the most time-consuming and costly aspects of electronic health record (EHR) use. Speech recognition (SR) technology, the automatic translation of voice to text, has been increasingly adopted to help clinicians complete their documentation in an efficient and cost-effective manner. One way in which SR can assist this process is commonly known as “back-end” SR, in which the clinician dictates into the telephone, the recorded audio is automatically transcribed to text by an speech recognition engine, and the text is edited by a professional medical transcriptionist and sent back to the EHR for the clinician to review and sign. In this study, we analyzed errors at different processing stages of clinical documents collected from 2 health care institutions using the same back-end SR vendor. We defined a comprehensive schema to systematically classify and analyze these errors, focusing particularly on clinically significant errors (errors that could plausibly affect a patient’s future care). We found an average of 7 errors per 100 words in raw  speech recognition transcriptions, and about 6% of those errors were clinically significant. 96.3% of the raw speech recognition transcriptions evaluated contained at least one error, and 63.6% had at least one clinically significant error. However, the rate of errors fell significantly after review by a medical transcriptionist, and it fell further still after the clinician reviewed the edited transcript. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cost of Health Care, Duke, Electronic Records, JAMA / 21.02.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Barak Richman JD, PhD Bartlett Professor of Law and Business Administration Duke University  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?  Response: The US not only has the highest health care costs in the world, we have the highest administrative costs in the world. If we can reduce non-value added costs like the ones we document, we can make substantial changes in the affordability of health care without having to resort to more draconian policy solutions. Our paper finds that administrative costs remain high, even after the adoption of electronic health records.  Billing costs, for example, constituted 25.2% of professional revenue for ED departments and 14.5% of revenue for primary care visits.  The other numbers are captured below. (more…)
Author Interviews, Electronic Records, Emergency Care / 09.02.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Shannon Toohey, MD, MAEd Associate Residency Director, Emergency Medicine Assistant Clinical Professor, Emergency Medicine University of California, Irvine Editor-in-Chief Journal of Education and Teaching in Emergency Medicine MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Electronic prescriptions (e-prescriptions) are now the predominant form of prescription used in the US. Concern has been raised that this form of prescription may be more difficult for emergency department (ED) patients to utilize than traditional printed prescriptions, given the unplanned nature of most ED visits at all times of day. While there are disincentives for physicians who choose not to use them, many emergency physicians are still concerned that it could decrease compliance in their patients. This study evaluated prescription compliance in insured patients at a single center. In our studied population, we found that patients were as equally likely to fill paper and e-Prescriptions. (more…)
Author Interviews, Electronic Records, Technology / 08.02.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: http://www.timicoin.io/Will Lowe, Timicoin CEO Mr. Lower discusses the first cryptocurrency blockchain mobile platform for storing medical records that can be safely accessed from anywhere. MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this announcement? Would you briefly explain what is meant by blockchain technology? How does it allow for more efficient storage and transmittal of encrypted medical records? Response: We do not store the data on any cloud storage to avoid any threat to data security and server overhead for data processing as well as to avoid temporary potential data unavailability. When a certain kind of data is queried by the consumer, our cloud engine first passes on the query to each of the providers (our gateway applications that are running on their node) and see if there are enough query results, it shows a sample to the consumer and if consumer decides to pay, it creates a Blockchain channel between the providers and the consumer that queried the data and all the provider nodes propagate the queried data onto that channel. So a common trust is built between the nodes and the consumer on that Blockchain channel and the shared query stays there as the trust builder. Then the consumer can anytime access the data needed from that blockchain channel. (more…)
Author Interviews, Dermatology, Electronic Records / 29.01.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: “Computer” by FullCodePress is licensed under CC BY 2.0Matilda W. Nicholas, MD, PhD Duke Dermatology Durham, North Carolina MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: I have found many physicians overwhelmed by the electronic messaging feature in Electronic Health Record systems (EHRs). I found there was very little published about this phenomenon, particularly for specialists. So, we set out to take a look at the volume and effect these systems have.  MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?  Response: We found that, on average, clinicians receive 3.24 messages per patient visit, for an average of about 50 messages per full day of clinic. The number of messages also correlated with poor reported work life balance for dermatologists. (more…)
ASCO, Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Electronic Records, University Texas / 29.10.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Ali Haider, MBBS MD Assistant Professor, Department of Palliative Care and Rehabilitation Medicine Division of Cancer Medicine The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center Houston, TX  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Patients with chronic and serious illnesses such as cancer often experience high physical and psychosocial symptoms. Recent studies have reported association of physicians' examination room computer use with less face to face interactions and eye contact. It's important for the clinicians to look for certain physical cues to better understand the well being of their patients. Therefore we conducted this randomized clinical trial to understand patients perception of physicians compassion, communication skills and professionalism with and without the use of examination room computer. (more…)
Author Interviews, Electronic Records, Heart Disease, JAMA / 06.09.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Rohan Khera MD Division of Cardiology University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center Texas  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: An increasing number of studies have used administrative claims (or billing) data to study in-hospital cardiac arrest with the goal of understanding differences in incidence and outcomes at hospitals that are not part of quality improvement initiatives like the American Heart Association’s Get With The Guidelines-Resuscitation (AHA’s GWTG-Resuscitation). These studies have important implications for health policies and determining targets for interventions for improving the care of patients with this cardiac arrest, where only in 1 in 5 patient survive the hospitalization. Therefore, in our study, we evaluated the validity of such an approach. We used data from 56,678 patients in AHA’s GWTG-Resuscitation with a confirmed in-hospital cardiac arrest, which were linked to Medicare claims data. We found: (1)  While most prior studies have used a diagnosis or procedure code alone to identify cases of in-hospital cardiac arrest, we found that the majority of confirmed cases in a national registry (AHA’s GWTG-Resuscitation) would not be captured using either administrative data strategy. (2)  Survival rates using administrative data to identify cases from the same reference population varied markedly and were 52% higher (28.4% vs. 18.7%) when using diagnosis codes alone to identify in-hospital cardiac arrest. (3)  There was large hospital variation in documenting diagnosis or procedure codes for patients with in-hospital cardiac arrest, which would have consequences for using administrative data to examine hospital-level variation in cardiac arrest incidence or survival, or conducting single-center studies to validate this administrative approach. (more…)
Author Interviews, Electronic Records, General Medicine / 28.07.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Macda Gerard M.D. Candidate | Class of 2021 Wayne State University School of Medicine MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: As electronic health records proliferate, patients are increasingly asking for their health information but little is known about how patients use that information or whether they encounter errors in their records. This comes at a time when we’re learning that understanding the patient and family experience, especially what is most valued in exchanges between doctors and patients is important and has many benefits. To learn more, we developed a formal mechanism for patients to provide feedback on what they like about accessing the information in their health records and to inform their clinical team about things like inaccuracies and perceived errors. So that’s the gap we tried to fill. The patient feedback tool is linked to the visit note in the electronic health record (EHR), and it’s part of a quality improvement initiative aimed at improving safety and learning what motivates patients to engage with their health information on the patient portal. Over the 12-month pilot period, 260 patients and care partners provided feedback using the OpenNotes patient feedback tool. Nearly all respondents found the tool to be valuable and about 70 percent provided additional information regarding what they liked about their notes and the feedback process. (more…)