As medical practices come under increasing pressure to switch to computerized record-keeping, new systems are appearing on the market, all claiming to offer the most painless transition and the most useful outputs, once the switch is completed.

Doctors aren't buying it. And anyone who's spent much time around doctors knows they can be a stubborn crowd. So benefits managers who optimistically await the day when they will be receiving timely and accessible data on employees' health conditions may be frustrated for years to come.

Or so indicates a recent study which just appeared in the Annals of Internal Medicine. Researchers gathered information on adoption of electronic health records systems from 1,820 clinicians, finding that only 43.5 percent of them had moved to an EHR. The idea behind pushing clinics to computerize record-keeping was to help them meet the "meaningful use" criteria established by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

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Dan Cook

Dan Cook is a journalist and communications consultant based in Portland, OR. During his journalism career he has been a reporter and editor for a variety of media companies, including American Lawyer Media, BusinessWeek, Newhouse Newspapers, Knight-Ridder, Time Inc., and Reuters. He specializes in health care and insurance related coverage for BenefitsPRO.