INDUSTRY WATCH: November/December 2015
A nationwide survey commissioned by Surescripts in May of this year and conducted by the independent research firm Kelton Global, found that while millions of people are open to using technology for key healthcare needs, the physician experience is not yet living up to their expectations. The Surescripts report, based on a survey of 1,000 adults and entitled Connected Care and the Patient, stated that there are a number of deficiencies in the physician visit experience. For example, 55% reported that their medical history tends to be missing or incomplete, and many said that their physician was unaware of all the prescriptions they are taking, their allergies, existing medical conditions, recent surgeries, or visits with other physicians.

Surescripts also found that the paperwork involved when seeing a new physician takes up more time than renewing a driver’s license and is on a par with buying a new car. The system is still very much paper based, with a high percentage of respondents stating that they frequently or always sign their names on paper forms, have their insurance card or ID photocopied or scanned, and write the details of their medical history on paper forms.

Provider use of desktop or tablet computers during the visit is viewed as a positive, with 70% seeing the physician as being more organized and efficient. Likewise, if patients were able to communicate with their physician via email or text instead of by phone, patients would be more open and feel less rushed when asking questions and more comfortable asking questions.