In the movie How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, starlet Kate Hudson makes every mistake a woman can make to drive a man away, while heartthrob Matthew McConaughey does just the opposite—he makes all the right decisions and compromises to make the relationship work.
Now, imagine the protagonists are an EHR and a medical practice. When you think about it, there are a lot of similarities between the search for love and the search for the right EHR, particularly when it comes to what goes wrong.
First, let’s consider some of the mistakes that Kate Hudson makes that drive away the guy. In the movie, she:
- is overbearing.
- distracts her boyfriend’s attention from the things he loves and insists he focus on her instead.
- makes him do things he hates.
- barges into his apartment, redecorates it, and rearranges everything.
- gives him a dog that requires too much time and attention to care for properly.
So let’s take these same lessons to heart and identify what the EHR should avoid doing that will certainly lead to EHR failure. The EHR should NOT:
1. be overbearing (the last thing you want is an EHR that dictates physicians’ workflows).
2. distract attention away from other things and onto itself (any EHR that makes physicians choose between focusing on their patients and on the EHR will certainly lose—and probably in less than 10 days).
3. force physicians to do things they have no desire to do (like navigate complicated drop-down menus and point-and-click screens).
4. come into the practice and overhaul everything (an EHR should merge seamlessly with your existing workflow, not disrupt it).
5. require too much time and attention to use properly (physicians and staff have enough to do without the burden of a complicated, unintuitive EHR).
Now let’s look at what Matthew McConaughey does to keep Kate’s affection, and consider what makes the physician—EHR relationship a long-lasting and successful one. In the movie, McConaughey:
6. did not pressure her into moving too fast; he didn’t rush things (the EHR vendor should take the time to fully understand the needs of your practice and to build the trust needed for a solid, on-going relationship).
7. goes with her to consult a professional therapist (you should search out other professional opinions about the EHR’s strengths and weaknesses).
8. brings her home to meet his family (always make sure you introduce the EHR to your entire practice so everyone can get to know it).
9. cooks her a romantic dinner (you need to spend quality time with the EHR before you purchase it for good).
10. accommodates her interests and puts her desires before his (this part is up to the EHR—it should be flexible, user-friendly, and easily accommodate physicians’ workflows).
The EHR search really isn’t so different than the search for love. Don’t have your heart broken or settle for anything less than the best.
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