EHR adoption rises at solo and two-physician practices


One- and two-physician practices are transitioning to EHRs at a faster clip than their larger colleagues, according to survey results released by healthcare research firm SK&A.

In its “Physician Office Usage of Electronic Health Records Software,” the company reported that for the second half of 2011, the adoption rate for single-doctor offices jumped 6 percentage points, from 30.8 percent to 36.9 percent, while the adoption rate for offices with 6 to 10 doctors jumped only 2 percentage points, from 63 percent to 65 percent.

Based on an ongoing telephone survey of 240,281 U.S. medical sites, the report showed an overall EHR adoption rate of 45.6 percent, up from 40.4 percent from the prior period. Other trends identified in the study report:

  • EHR adoption rises as the number of physicians practicing at each site rises. Offices with three to five practicing physicians had 54.9 percent adoption, while offices with 26-plus practicing physicians had 77.2 percent adoption.
  • EHR adoption rises as the number of exam rooms at each site rises. Offices with one to three exam rooms had 34.6 percent average adoption, while offices with 11-plus exam rooms had 66.6 percent adoption.
  • EHR adoption rises as the average daily patient volume at each site rises. Offices with average daily patient volumes of one to 50 patients had 41.2 percent adoption, while offices with 101-plus patients had 68.4 percent adoption.
  • Physician specialties with the highest adoption rates are dialysis (68.4 percent), pathology (66.2 percent), nuclear medicine (64.2 percent) and radiology (62.8 percent).