Human-computer interface progress vital to success of EHRs

"Steve Jobs' passing last week has triggered myriad reflections on his immense contribution to the modern world," writes FierceHealthIT's Ken Terry. "While much emphasis has been placed on Apple's recent trendsetting products--the iPod, iPhone and iPad--the signal contribution of Apple under the leadership of Jobs and Steve Wozniak was to make the personal computer practical and useful. Beyond the Apple operating system itself, the invention of the Macintosh computer--which used a mouse-based graphical user interface derived from an experimental Xerox product--radically redefined the relationship between humans and computers.

"Despite all the technological advances since then, however, physicians continue to struggle with that relationship," he continues. "I recall that back in the 1990s, when I began covering this space, there was considerable disagreement among experts about whether electronic medical records were ready for prime time. Clement McDonald, MD, who helped pioneer health IT at Indianapolis' Regenstrief Institute, once told me that doctors would never accept EMRs (now known as EHRs) until they could dictate their notes and have them transcribed automatically into discrete data. In retrospect, that prediction probably was a shade too pessimistic." Read Ken's full post at FierceHealthIT

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