Survey: 3 in 4 Patients Say Computers Help Their Doctors Deliver Better Care


Patients surveyed on doctors’ use of Electronic Health Records two years after ARRA anniversary.

SAN FRANCISCO – March 8, 2011 – A survey conducted by GfK Roper for Practice Fusion reveals an overwhelming majority of Americans believe doctors using a computer system provide them with better care. An estimated $27 billion has been allocated to help the medical sector transition to Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems as part of the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). Practice Fusion is a free, web-based EHR that addresses the two biggest hurdles to physician adoption: cost and usability.

“It’s 2011 and patients want their healthcare to reflect the fact we’re in the 21st century. They want to have prescriptions sent electronically, to receive email appointment reminders and to review past diagnoses and upcoming appointments online,” said Ryan Howard, CEO of Practice Fusion. “With Practice Fusion, doctors can provide the standard of care that patients expect today, improving the patient experience and preventing unnecessary medical errors.”

The Practice Fusion survey found no measurable change in the percentage of physicians reported by patients to be using a computer in 2010 vs. 2011. Although CDC reports have indicated increased adoption, 90 percent of physicians are still not using a complete EHR today.

Key facts:

  • 49 percent of patients report their physician used an EHR during their last office visit (unchanged from report in February 2010).
  • 78 percent of patients whose doctors used an EHR believe the computer system helps their doctor deliver better care.
  • 38 percent of patients whose doctors use paper charts would like their doctor to “go digital.”
  • EHRs improve primary care clinicians’ quality of care over 12 months, according to a study by the Society of General Internal Medicine.
  • The CDC reports 10 percent of US physicians have systems that met the criteria of a fully functional EHR, an improvement from 7 percent in 2009.

Medical providers interested in making the switch to Electronic Health Records for free, can sign up online at practicefusion.com/go. The Practice Fusion EHR system includes charting, scheduling, e-prescribing, referral letters and other clinical features tailored to the small to mid-sized medical practice.

Raw results from the past two annual patient surveys are available upon request. Practice Fusion can also offer physician sources that use EHR systems to care for their patients and health IT experts to discuss the benefits of real-time, information-driven healthcare.

Survey methodology

The second annual Practice Fusion “Doctors Gone Digital” study was conducted via omnibus survey on February 25-27, 2011. The GfK OmniTel survey is a weekly national phone survey of US households. Interviews were conducted from among a nationally representative sample of 1,004 adults age 18 or older. The margin of error on weighted data is +/- 3 percentage points for the full sample.

About Practice Fusion

Practice Fusion provides a free, web-based Electronic Health Record (EHR) system to physicians. With charting, scheduling, e-prescribing, billing, lab integrations, referral letters, unlimited support and a Personal Health Record for patients, Practice Fusion’s EHR addresses the complex needs of today’s healthcare providers and disrupts the health IT status quo. Practice Fusion is the fastest growing EHR community in the country with more than 150,000 users serving 8 million patients. Physicians voted Practice Fusion as the No. 1 EHR in customer satisfaction for primary care in 2011 in Brown-Wilson’s Black Book Rankings. For more information about Practice Fusion, please visit practicefusion.com.

Press Contact – Helen Phung