Can Patients Be Their Own Scribes???

Here is a novel idea from an ER physician who prides himself on being the “Efficient MD.” Rather than have patients sitting for hours aimlessly pouring through old magazines while they wait to be seen, have them use online software to start to fill in their own charts. Having shared with us this interesting notion, the blogging physician then goes on to list several reasons why that might not work. Little things like the cost of the technology, patient confidentiality, etc.  

Bottom Line. While this idea might need a little fine tuning, I think that this doctor might be on to something here. In the pharmaceutical industry and in the halls of medicine, we talk a lot about “patient engagement.” Picture how disengaging it is for a patient to have to sit mindlessly for several hours waiting for care. What could a little technological empowerment do to make better use of patients’ time, perhaps taking a little of the workload off the doctor and starting, rather than thwarting, the process of patient engagement?

Think about it!

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