A study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine shows that, for many medical professionals, every hour they spend with their patients comes with two hours they have to spend on paperwork. Even in the examination room, doctors are having to jot down notes in a computer system that all too often was designed without any input from a practicing medical professional.
According to another study performed in 2005, this paperwork problem isn’t exactly a recent problem, although it’s one that’s grown much worse in recent years. Specifically, the ratio in that earlier study was one hour of paperwork for every two hours spent with patients.
Many people point to the implementation of electronic health records for this uptick in time spent on paperwork, although that’s not the complete story. There’s also the fact that doctors have to create medical records to send to insurance companies, law firms, Medicare, and administration records, and all of them may be asking for different information or for different forms. And since none of these groups are actively collaborating, they often don’t realize how they’re contributing to physician paperwork and burnout.
But that’s why scribes are becoming so popular throughout the health care industry. Although unlicensed individuals are barred from helping physicians with certain tasks, and usually with good reason, medical scribes can absolutely help with tasks like transcribing notes on examination room computers so that doctors can spend more time interacting with the patient, taking phone calls and setting up appointments, retrieving test results, filing insurance claims, and other clerical tasks that normally have to be performed by doctors and nurses.
ProScribe offers some of the most professional scribes in the industry, and the statistics we’ve collected from the hospitals and clinics who use our services speak for themselves. Scribes can help doctors see more patients each day even as they spend more time with each one, which means our service can improve both revenue and job satisfaction. If your medical workplace doesn’t make use of scribes yet, consider setting up a pilot program to see whether they can help you out.