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Using Log Data to Measure Provider EHR Activity at a Cancer Center during Rapid Telemedicine Deployment
Objectives Accurate metrics of provider activity within the electronic health record (EHR) are critical to understand workflow efficiency and target optimization initiatives. We utilized newly described, log-based core metrics at a tertiary cancer center during rapid escalation of telemedicine secondary to initial coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) peak onset of social distancing restrictions at our medical center (COVID-19 peak). These metrics evaluate the impact on total EHR time, work outside of work, time on documentation, time on prescriptions, inbox time, teamwork for orders, and undivided attention patients receive during an encounter. Our study aims were to evaluate feasibility of implementing these metrics as an efficient tool to optimize provider workflow and to track impact on workflow to various provider groups, including physicians, advanced practice providers (APPs), and different medical divisions, during times of significant policy change in the treatment landscape.
Methods Data compilation and analysis was retrospectively performed in Tableau utilizing user and schedule data obtained from Cerner Millennium PowerChart and our internal scheduling software. We analyzed three distinct time periods: the 3 months prior to the initial COVID-19 peak, the 3 months during peak, and 3 months immediately post-peak.
Results Application of early COVID-19 restrictions led to a significant increase of telemedicine encounters from baseline <1% up to 29.2% of all patient encounters. During initial peak period, there was a significant increase in total EHR time, work outside of work, time on documentation, and inbox time for providers. Overall APPs spent significantly more time in the EHR compared with physicians. All of the metrics returned to near baseline after the initial COVID-19 peak in our area.
Conclusion Our analysis showed that implementation of these core metrics is both feasible and can provide an accurate representation of provider EHR workflow adjustments during periods of change, while providing a basis for cross-vendor and cross-institutional analysis.
Protection of Human and Animal Subjects
Human and/or animal subjects were not included in the project.
Received: 25 January 2021
Accepted: 29 May 2021
14 July 2021 (online)
© 2021. Thieme. All rights reserved.
Georg Thieme Verlag KG
Rüdigerstraße 14, 70469 Stuttgart, Germany
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