Medicare-eligible physicians at primary care practices (PCP) that did not implement an electronic health record (EHR) system by the end of 2015 face stiff penalties. One year prior to the 2015 deadline, approximately half of all primary clinics have not implemented a basic EHR system. The purpose of this phenomenology study was to explore rural primary care physicians and physician assistants’ experiences regarding overcoming barriers to implementing EHRs. Complex adaptive systems formed the conceptual framework for this study. Data were collected through face-to-face interviews with a purposeful sample of 21 physicians and physician assistants across 2 rural PCPs in the southeastern region of Missouri. Participant perceptions were elicited regarding overcoming barriers to implementing EHRs systems as manadated by federal legislation. Interview questions were transcribed and processed through qualitative software to discern themes of how rural PCP physicians and physician assistants might overcome barriers to implementing electronic health records. Through the exploration of the narrative segments, 4 emergent themes were common among the participants including (a) limited finances to support EHRs, (b) health information exchange issues, (c) lack of business education, and (d) lack of change management at rural medical practices. This study may provide rural primary care physicians and administrators with strategies to promote the adoption of EHRs, provide cost efficient business services, and improve change management plans.
Electronic Health Records, Primary Care Practices, Physician Group, Complex Adaptive Systems, Phenomenology
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Recommended APA Citation
Mason, P., Mayer, R., Chien, W., & Monestime, J. P. (2017). Overcoming Barriers to Implementing Electronic Health Records in Rural Primary Care Clinics. The Qualitative Report, 22(11), 2943-2955. https://doi.org/10.46743/2160-3715/2017.2515