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Doctor with patient and computer.

Medical Research: Scribes Can Reduce Documentation Burden For Primary Care Physicians, But Cost Is High

Primary care in the United States is in a state of crisis, with fewer trainees entering the field and more current primary care doctors leaving due to professional burnout. Changes in the practice of primary care, including the many burdens related to EHR documentation, has been identified as a major source of physician burnout. There are ongoing efforts to reduce physician burnout by improving the work environment. One innovation has been the use of medical scribes in the exam room who are trained to enter narrative notes based on the patient-provider interview.

Laptop with stethoscope.

MedPage Today: My Sworn Enemy, the Keyboard

During one long ago very hot Washington D.C. summer, at the suggestion of my parents, I enrolled in a typing course that was given at our elementary school.

This was the summer between sixth and seventh grades, and there were lots of things I would've preferred to have been doing, but my dad, who started out in advertising, felt that touch-typing was a skill everyone needed.

Physician typing on computer.

Scribes can help transform health care by creating better clinical data

Insurers, drug companies and large HMOs are mounting an extensive effort to use medical data to decide which treatments are best, which doctors are best and which plans keep people the healthiest.

Doctors working.

Brown Political Review: How Medical Scribes Can Heal Physician Burnout

Physician burnout—not Zika or Ebola—is the next big epidemic threatening our health care system. Doctors in the United States are more burnt out than ever before, leading to emotional exhaustion and even depression, which harms the well-being of patients and physicians alike. A 2014 survey of nearly 7,000 physicians found that 54.5 percent reported symptoms consistent with burnout—up from 45.5 percent in 2011.

Person typing on laptop.

JAMA Forum: Medical Scribes, Productivity, and Satisfaction

A more productive work environment and a more satisfied workforce often go hand in hand. As the burden of documentation required by electronic health records (EHRs) increases, clinicians’ frustrations and lists of obligations grow. Medical scribes may offer reprieve.