The Effects of Physicians’ Electronic Healthcare Record Usage Style on Patient-Centered Interviewing.
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The practice of using computer systems in consulting rooms to review and edit patient histories of medications and procedures during consultations has been gaining momentum. Studies have shown that Electronic Healthcare Records (EHR) are more accessible and provide more complete information than paper records. However, previous research has shown that the use of computers in the consultation room has both positive and negative effects on physician-patient communication. A recent concern is that computer usage in the consultation room will lead to less patient-centered interviewing. This could potentially be a problem because patient-centered interviewing has been shown to lead to greater patient satisfaction and compliance, thus better patient health. The current study seeks to discern whether certain physician computer usage styles positively correlate with patient-centered scores. Videotapes of residents interacting with patients were viewed and rated on two scales. The first scale concerned EHR usage style and measured physician behavior in regards to their interactions with the computer and interactions with their patient. The other scale was Measure of Patient Centered Communication and measured physician communication with the patient. The results were not significant and no specific physician computer usage style was found to correlate with patient-centered scores.