Do doctors spend enough time with their patients? Your answer would likely depend on whether you are a patient or a doctor. Research shows that for several decades doctors have been spending less time with patients.
There is a multitude of factors as to why that may be the case. Still, most people and medical professionals would accept that it is a good thing if doctors have the freedom to spend the time they feel they need with the patient. How does a medical scribe help a physician achieve this?
In part, that is what this article is about. You will read about nine benefits of using a medical scribe. Both doctors and the general public have a shared interest in these benefits so read on to learn what they are.
1. More Patient Contact Time
One of the most outstanding benefits of using a medical scribe is that it allows the doctor to focus more on the needs of the patient and less on completing the necessary paperwork.
The detailed nature of medical reports and the billing structure within the patient management software means that significant time must be invested in capturing and recording accurate medical information. In the past, this time-consuming activity has been done by the doctor.
Medical scribers take the pressure off the doctor to complete all this documentation so that they can keep their mind on what matters the most. This means more patient time for patients that genuinely need it.
2. Happier Patient Happier Doctor
Most people when they signed up for medical school did not envisage the extent of the documentation required to run a medical facility. Perhaps their primary motivation was to help people and diagnose and treat medical needs.
Being faced with an intimidating computer system always hungry for more information is dispiriting at best. Working with a medical scribe allows the doctor to see past the computer and actually see the patient. That makes for better medical care, happier patients, and of course happier doctors.
3. Reduce Clinician Burnout
Burnout is a big problem for doctors all over the world. In the U.S over half of doctors will experience burnout. There are many contributing factors to burnout but one of the contributors has to be stress. Sadly, medical professionals are under massive amounts of pressure to constantly do more.
A medical scribe can help to take some of the stress, pressure, and load off the doctor and onto their specialized role. This can help alleviate anxiety and stress associated with time pressures in the clinic.
4. Shorter Waiting Times
How does a medical scribe help a physician? This one is a no brainer. Ultimately, if more patients can be seen in a day because the doctor does not waste time on completing paperwork then that means each patient does not have to wait as long to be seen.
5. Improved Work Flow
Workflow is about having the right things in the right places at the right time so that the overall work operation can be as efficient and effective as possible. The opposite is true when work is delayed or has to be re-done because some of the essential things were missing in the production process.
Those principles equally apply to healthcare as they do to the industry in which they were pioneered. A medical scribe can help by making sure there are no unnecessary delays in vital information being available in the patient record. That means clinical decisions and care need not be delayed.
6. Better Teamwork
Modern doctors have come to appreciate more than ever they are part of a bigger team. Going to see the doctor or going to the hospital to receive healthcare does not mean just talking to the doctor. It involves multiple professionals.
Sometimes it is not always clear how these professionals fit together. The medical scribe is a visible or tangible bridge between the doctor and the administrative system. Professionals involved in these relationships report a better sense of accomplishment and teamwork.
7. Increased Medical Revenue
Most doctors are not business people and they are not accountants. They can be forgiven for not getting all the billing terms correct. On the other hand, a trained medical scribe will accurately record what is needed with a further impact on billable procedures.
It also makes sense to be using your most expensive resources doing the work that generates the most income. A medical scribe will allow a doctor to focus most of their time on income-generating activities.
8. Fewer Errors in Documentation
Have you ever heard the proverb two heads are better than one? That is certainly true when it comes to recording complex medical notes. The presence or at least the service of a medical scribe is another set of eyes (and sometimes ears) in which to spot mistakes and correct them.
This prompts the useful explanation that there are many ways in which to acquire medical scribal services. Some are in person with the doctor, others are remote, and some are software-driven. You can see details if this interests you.
9. Improved Trust Between Providers and Insurance
There tends to be some tension between healthcare providers and insurers. This is understandable as it involves the transaction of vast amounts of money. Still, those relationships benefit when both parties have full confidence in their documentation.
A medical scriber who solely focuses on delivering accurate records goes a long way to demonstrating a provider’s commitment to high quality and accurate documentation. That will be favorably received by medical insurance companies.
How Does a Medical Scribe Help a Physician? Now You Know
How does a medical scribe help a physician? We have considered nine benefits that emphasize the importance of keeping patient care at the forefront while also helping medical professionals to get the satisfaction they sought when they opted to train to be doctors.
Check out some other health-related articles on this site.