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Assessing Methods
of Documenting Encounters with Hand Surgery Patients

Athough improving access to patient information through electronic health records (EHR) is important, the necessary medical documentation has increased physicians’ clerical load and has been identified as a contributing factor to burnout.

Are there ways to reduce this burden on physicians, and thus decrease burnout, without sacrificing vital data about patient care?

That was the question a task force at The Rothman Institute sought to answer with their analysis of available documentation modalities. Their findings were recently presented at the 2023 annual meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.

They evaluated the overall quality of these modalities, including artificial intelligence (AI)-based virtual scribe services, as well as the time needed to capture a patient encounter. Their goal was to maximize physicians’ workload to the fullest extent of their license “by finding methods to outsource certain tasks, such as documentation, as this can be time consuming and redundant,” said study author Michael Rivlin, MD, an orthopaedic surgeon with The Rothman Institute and an associate professor at Thomas Jefferson University, both in Philadelphia.