Government Health IT, September 7, 2011
There are several factors inhibiting EMR adoption, but the concept of usability is often at the root, and rightfully so. Although effective training and implementation methods affect user adoption rates as well, poor usability has a strong impact on productivity, error rate, and user satisfaction. And usability should be considered more than just user satisfaction, according to Rosemarie Nelson, principal of the MGMA Consulting Group. The concept is far more complex, and to Nelson, it's synonymous with workflow integration. "Too much attention is given to the number of clicks and screens, when what should be considered is how and when information is presented," she said. Steve Waldren, MD, Director of the American Academy of Family Physicians' Center for Health IT, explained that when it comes to understanding usability, it's essential to consider utility as well. "Usability is subjective in many ways," he said. "It has to do with the functionality of the system. Utility is making sure the system does the things you need it to do."