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Patients may have to compete with computers for doctors' attention

U.S. News & World Report, January 31, 2014

Is "The doctor will see you now" turning into "The doctor will watch the screen?" A new study suggests that physicians may spend too much time looking at their computer screens when seeing patients. The study found that those who use electronic health records in the examination room spend about one-third of patient visits looking at the computer screen, which interferes with their ability to interact with patients. "When doctors spend that much time looking at the computer, it can be difficult for patients to get their attention," study first author Enid Montague, an assistant professor in medicine, general internal medicine and geriatrics at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, said in a university news release.