4 steps to successful EHR training

In order to ensure user buy-in for a successful EHR implementation, it is essential to provide thorough EHR training so that users feel comfortable and confident in the new system. Poor training can lead to frustrated users and poor clinician buy-in. Utilize these four steps to increase the confidence of your EHR implementation.

1) Appoint one or two super-users

Determine which clinical staff members have some prior experience with EHR systems or are IT savvy and also willing to provide extra guidance and mentoring to fellow employees. Designate these EHR super-users to be the “go-to” people when questions arise. These individuals should receive in depth training on all facets of the EHR system, so that they can readily understand and answer questions from various staff, both clinical and office related. It may be beneficial to incentivize this position with an extra vacation day or a small bonus.

2) Train employees in the specific component they will be using

It is unreasonable and unproductive to train every employee in every facet of the EHR system. By trying to train employees in every facet of the EHR system, you will likely create confusion and slow down mastery of the system. Instead, train clinical staff in the clinical components of the system that they will be using. Train office staff in the administrative and operational components of the system. If office staff will not be conducting evaluations, then there is no need for them to know how to input clinical data.

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3) Provide customer support contact information as well as training to utilize online training material

The true experts of the EHR system, are the customer support personnel themselves. As part of your onboarding process, you should be entitled to member support via online or telephone communication. In addition, many EHR vendors offer online community resources in the form of webinars, flow charts, and online training manuals. These online resources are typically available when you log-in to the EHR system. Be sure that your practice staff is aware of these resources, so they may find answers independently, which should reduce frustration and productivity issues.

4) Welcome feedback, suggestions, and concerns

Training will not end with implementation of your EHR system. Once your staff begin to use the system with real patients and with day to day operations, they will inevitably experience some difficulties and problems. The best way to identify problems and quickly resolve issues, is to ask staff for regular feedback. This way, you can identify common areas of confusion and readily retrain all staff. You can host weekly EHR meetings with all different members of the practice (nurses, physicians, billing, front office etc), so that all issues can be brought forth. Once issues are identified, you can more easily find solutions.

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Amy Vant

About the author…

Amy Vant is a doctor of physical therapy and clinical director for an outpatient physical therapy clinic in the United States. She has experience utilizing and implementing many forms of medical documentation through various healthcare practice venues. Amy enjoys writing about healthcare administration strategies, including electronic health record systems.

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Amy Vant