No End In Sight

In my opinion the Modern Healthcare website has never really leaned one way or another politically in the past. That is why I was amazed to see this:

On Feb. 17, 2009, President Barack Obama signed legislation that created the federal government’s meaningful use electronic health records incentive program. Nearly 10 years and $35 billion in federal incentives later, hospitals and health systems are still struggling with EHRs, as new installations disrupt workflows and cost millions of dollars, eating into their bottom lines.

Boy, that was blind side shot.  Ouch.

Then they listed these nuggets:

  • Trinity Health reported a $107.8 million asset impairment charge for its fiscal 2018 related to its hospitals and continuing-care facilities switching to a single version of Epic EHR
  • A newly live Epic EHR installation at the Mayo Clinic made up a chunk of the health system’s overall $1.5 billion investment in new technology.
  • Partners HealthCare spent $1.2 billion on an Epic EHR, with installation beginning in 2015.
  • Scripps Health ran into some EHR-related road bumps a few year ago, reporting weakened financial results as it readied an EHR conversion budgeted for 10 years to cost just over $300 million and expected to incur $360.5 million in operating costs.

I guess the question really is, was this all worth it?  With little input from the physicians they forced to use this stuff the administrators are now reeling due to their inefficiencies.  They work poorly.  They were built for billing.  They have added to the misery and burnout of doctors.   Again, was it all worth it?


Maybe the bigger question is why is there no blowback on the idiots who started this crap?

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Douglas Farrago MD

Douglas Farrago MD is a full-time practicing family doc in Forest, Va. He started Forest Direct Primary Care where he takes no insurance and bills patients a monthly fee. He is board certified in the specialty of Family Practice. He is the inventor of a product called the Knee Saver which is currently in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Knee Saver and its knock-offs are worn by many major league baseball catchers. He is also the inventor of the CryoHelmet used by athletes for head injuries as well as migraine sufferers. Dr. Farrago is the author of four books, two of which are the top two most popular DPC books. From 2001 – 2011, Dr. Farrago was the editor and creator of the Placebo Journal which ran for 10 full years. Described as the Mad Magazine for doctors, he and the Placebo Journal were featured in the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the AP, and the NY Times. Dr. Farrago is also the editor of the blog Authentic Medicine which was born out of concern about where the direction of healthcare is heading and the belief that the wrong people are in charge. This blog has been going daily for more than 15 years Article about Dr. Farrago in Doximity Email Dr. Farrago – [email protected] 

  10 comments for “No End In Sight

  1. Kurt
    October 18, 2018 at 2:51 pm

    EHR: Retiring doctors early since 2006. Better make sure you have been contributing to the retirement fund so one can get out when they hit medicare age. At least make sure your investment advisor knows that.

  2. LJSloss
    October 16, 2018 at 11:17 am

    Again, the old litmus test: (Q:) CUI BONO (To whose benefit?)

    (A:) The suits – who else. Elsewhere in the hospital and healthcare systems (inclusive of Docs, Nurses, Patients), nobody.

    In the case of Partners, $1.3 Billion works out to at least $30K per user. There is no way one can justify that expenditure, no matter how you value the basic off-the-shelf software, software upgrades and system integration, implementation, training, etc. There is an enormous amount of extra money floating around in these deals. Where did it go…???

  3. Ben Van Raalte
    October 16, 2018 at 9:23 am

    Its real simple. Corruption. The founder of Epic was Obamas earliest big donor. Her net worth went from 50 million to 7 billion

  4. Steve O'
    October 16, 2018 at 9:16 am

    The first stage of phony revolution is TheHammer: the destruction of function and value. Not only wreckage, but also penury, is necessary.
    Whether the wreckers are mobs with torches, or entitled snobs in designer suits, is irrelevant.

  5. PW
    October 16, 2018 at 8:58 am

    As Freddie Fender would say, “Wasted days and wasted nights”… and wasted money.

  6. RSW
    October 16, 2018 at 8:49 am

    “the idiots who started this crap”

    They’re far from idiots – these are exactly they wanted, and they’re laughing all the way to the back.

    The idiots are the physicians who joyfully and mindlessly brought this Trojan Horse into the House of Medicine.

    • RSW
      October 16, 2018 at 8:51 am

      Need an edit function. Make that:

      They’re far from idiots – these are exactly the results they wanted, and they’re laughing all the way to the bank.

  7. October 16, 2018 at 6:35 am

    “…why is there no blowback on the idiots who started this crap?”

    Because they’re on to the next bullshit IT lilly pad in Silicon Valley: dHealth. Look closely, you’ll recognize the same old names from the ABIM and ABIM Foundation:

    • Martha O'Reilly
      October 16, 2018 at 7:36 am

      Aaarrgh christine cassel again. Anywhere she is the stank of corruption follows

    • RSW
      October 16, 2018 at 8:53 am

      That’s one scary line-up of crooks and charlatans.

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