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EHR still needs HUMAN LEVEL interaction to be efficient

EHR still needs HUMAN LEVEL interaction to be efficient

As many patients and healthcare providers continue to complain about the use of Electronic Health Record ( EHR ) software, there is a new recommended set of guidelines that promotes the integration of the EHR tool into the patient’s visit. Wei Lee, MD, assistant professor of medicine at the University of Chicago’s Pritzker School of Medicine, delivered the session: “Computer and Patient: Competition or Collaboration?” at the American College of Physicians 2018 Internal Medicine Meeting in New Orleans.

Physicians complain that they spend too much time typing, but Wei encourages use of the EHR as a tool to enhance communication and improve patient education. Wei and her team developed a set of courses of actions for when using EHR software to enhance patient-centered care. This set of guidelines is summarized with the acronym HUMAN LEVEL:

  • Honor the first minute of the patient encounter
  • Use the “triangle of trust”
  • Maximize patient interaction
  • Acquaint yourself with the patient’s chart
  • Nix the screen
  • Let the patient look on while entering information into the EHR
  • Eye contact
  • Value the computer
  • Explain what you’re doing
  • Log off

These guidelines should improve communication and build trust between patients and physicians. To assist providers with this approach, YES HIM Consulting provides customized services that make the EHR an effective tool for providers, including but not limited to, continuing education, process improvement, and coder mentoring

Videos in which Wei and her colleagues discuss these practices in greater detail are available online at

Karen Youmans

Karen G. Youmans, MPA, RHIA, CCS – President, YES HIM Consulting, Inc. AHIMA-approved ICD-10-CM/PCS trainer

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