The cure for burnout in the provider population is improved healthcare IT usability and interoperability, according to a new report that urges EHR vendors, payers, providers and regulators to work together to find solutions.
The report from the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) blames the fact that between one-third and one-half of U.S. clinicians experience burnout on high workloads, heavy administrative burden, and poorly designed technologies. Making the technology in hospitals—an increasingly stressful work environment—easier to use is key, it says.
“Technology can either contribute to clinician burnout (e.g., poorly designed electronic health record technologies) or potentially reduce clinician burnout (e.g., well-functioning patient communications, clinical decision support) if it is well designed, implemented, and integrated into clinical workflow,” NAM says.
Among the report’s advice for HIT vendors, healthcare organizations, and regulators:
- Design and configure systems to improve the clinical work environment, automating non-essential tasks and paying attention to cognitive load and workflows that reduce the demands of clinical documentation.
- Closely monitor implemented technology for unintended negative consequences, making sure there is a plan to mitigate these consequences when they happen.
- Create incentives and lower barriers to the development and implementation of new approaches and technologies with the promise of enhanced provider satisfaction and quality of care.
To read the full report, click here.