A recent article in STAT discussed the ins-and-outs of scribe impact on the emergency department. PhysAssist Scribes and the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, MA, were spotlighted in this interesting behind-the-curtain perspective on what a scribe does during a normal shift.
By nature, the emergency department can be challenging on its providers. With demands for physicians coming from all sides, not to mention long hours, burnout can rear its ugly head quickly. The trickle-down from the exhausted physician to the patient can result in, at the very least, an unhappy patient and, at its worst, compromised care.
Micro was a cinch. Organic chemistry was a breeze (well, maybe not). Anatomy and physiology was a walk in the park. And Scribe U? Well, that seemed challenging…but now that you’re working in the emergency department, you can totally coast through this whole scribing thing till you get into medical school. Right?
“Our goal is to put scribe companies out of business.” A friend in the EMR industry said these words to me the day before I started my new job at PhysAssist Scribes. I about fell out of my chair. Had I made a terrible career choice? Was the medical scribe industry doomed to be put out of business by a big, bad, publicly traded EMR company?
I’ve been working in the medical scribe industry a little over a year now, and I often think about my friend’s comment. He was arguing that improving technology in the healthcare industry would eventually eliminate the need for medical scribes. In reality, the introduction and wide adoption of the EMR has really just opened up another chapter in the long history of the quest to solve what I call “the inputting problem” that has long plagued the healthcare industry.