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Improved Medical Student Engagement with EHR Documentation following the 2018 Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Billing ChangesFunding None.
Background Medical student note writing is an important part of the training process but has suffered in the electronic health record (EHR) era as a result of student notes being excluded from the billable encounter. The 2018 CMS billing changes allow for medical student notes to be used for billable services provided that physical presence requirements are met, and attending physicians satisfy performance requirements and verify documentation. This has the potential to improve medical student engagement and decrease physician documentation burden.
Methods Our institution implemented medical student notes as part of the billable encounter in August 2018 with support of our compliance department. Note characteristics including number, type, length, and time in note were analyzed before and after implementation. Rotating medical students were surveyed regarding their experience following implementation.
Results There was a statistically significant increase in the number of student-authored notes following implementation. Attending physicians' interactions with student notes greatly increased following the change (4% of student notes reviewed vs. 84% of student notes). Surveyed students reported that having their notes as part of the billable record made their notes more meaningful and enhanced their learning. The majority of surveyed students also agreed that they received more feedback following the change.
Conclusion Medical students are interested in writing notes for education and feedback. Inclusion of their notes as part of the billable record can facilitate their learning and increase their participation in the note writing process.
Keywordselectronic health records - education, medical, undergraduate - documentation - Centers for Medicare and Medicaid
Protection of Human and Animal Subjects
The Stanford University IRB Board determined that this project does not meet the definition of human subject research as defined in federal regulations 45 CFR 46.102 and is exempted from further IRB review.
Received: 27 January 2021
Accepted: 18 May 2021
07 July 2021 (online)
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