Physician IT Skepticism: Over at Last? Humbug!

There’s an interesting article at The Medical Blog Network about Physician IT Skepticism perhaps diminishing a bit.

Having been in the physician IT game during the dotcom era I still have nightmares about how hard it was to convince docs to part with their money for absolutely nothing in return. We tried and tried to convince them to try our software that had only been used by a few docs and that they should trust us that it would work for them. We tried desperately to get them to believe us that their data would be perfectly secure and that the we’d be around for years because we millions in investment behind us. To this day I can’t believe hundreds of thousands of docs didn’t sign with us! 🙂

Ok, so I’m being a little coy here, but only a little. Doctors are not skeptical about IT because they don’t think IT has value. In clinics and small offices they’re skeptical because they’re a small business and selling anything to a small business without a very strong ROI, demonstrated value, and excellent service is (and should be) difficult.

If we in healthcare IT gave docs more than empty promises — like software that’s easy to install, requires no training to use, is actually useful, integrates well with their existing system, gets them paid faster, doesn’t require large sums of cash outlays and doesn’t kill them with maintenance charges — they’ll buy from us. If we don’t do all that, lets not kid ourselves: AMA’s suggestion of a “sea change” simply means that docs are somehow dumber now than 5 years ago. I don’t believe that for a minute.

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4 thoughts on “Physician IT Skepticism: Over at Last? Humbug!

  1. Shahid,

    Our post only quotes the study saying, physicians are less skeptical about *using* IT, not *paying* for it.

    I am sure you remember there has been a lot of active resistance even when IT was provided for free, for example by the hospitals.

    Of course we are still long way off from perfecting the workable business case.

  2. Pingback: The Medical Blog Network

  3. Hippocrates, you are of course right — physicians are definitely more skeptical about *using* IT. However, I think that’s because we in health IT haven’t really made anything like a “killer app” for them. And the stuff we do make for them is cookie cutter in nature and not really self-adapting to become tailored for individual usage.

  4. Exactly. The bright side of the study is that physicians may be a bit more open to listening nowdays. But of course this is the burden of health IT industry to make a case.

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