EHR Pilot Project Shows ASP Model Has Benefits for Small Physician Practices
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, March 08, 2005
American Academy of Family Physicians
(800) 274-2237, Ext. 5223
Additionally, the project showed that the challenges of training, implementation, and ongoing support for small physician practices – typically faced with tight budgets – can be significantly reduced by using a combination of Web conferences, email discussion lists and telephone meetings to replace expensive on-site visits by vendors or trainers. Current data indicates that rates of adoption in small practices continue to lag, in part because of potential high costs and loss of productivity from EHR implementation. No on-site visits for training or implementation were conducted during the EHR Pilot Project.
“This was a true collaborative effort,” said David C. Kibbe, M.D., director of the AAFP’s Center for Health Information Technology. “It points us in the direction of Internet-based applications that will support the IT needs of small medical practices, and helps us understand in detail some of the necessary factors to success with EHR adoption in small family practices. We can definitely build on this project.”
The EHR Pilot Project was designed to include six typical small family practices that vary from one to five physicians, in six different U.S. locations. Additionally, practices were selected on the basis of their average familiarity with computers: ‘technical enthusiasts’ were specifically excluded from the candidate pool.
The physicians and staff from the six practices participating in the Pilot Project committed to three main objectives:
- implement and use an ASP, Internet-based, EHR system over a six month period;
- intensively study the barriers and keys to success during implementation; and
- identify the special needs of small and solo practices and find ways to address those needs before and after implementation.
All phases of the project were carried out as a collaborative between the practices, staff from the AAFP’s CHiT, and personnel from MedPlexus Inc., Siemens Medical Solutions, Hewlett Packard and Phyxe, Inc.
The results of the project are available at http://www.centerforhit.org/ehrpilot.xml.
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