May 2007

Document Type


Degree Name



Dept. of Biomedical Informatics


Oregon Health & Science University


Objective: Electronic Health Record (EHR) adoption is encouraged by health plans, government agencies, and the American and Washington Academies of Family Physicians (W AFP), but rates of EHR adoption by family physicians in Washington are unknown. This study measured current rates of EHR adoption by family physicians in Washington State as well as perceived barriers to adoption and what physicians identify as means to overcome those measures. Design: A survey of medical practices in Washington State was performed. One physician per practice was selected to respond on behalf of their practice for all practices where family physicians work where contact information was available in the databases of the Washington State Medical Association and W AFP. The survey was distributed electronically or in print form depending on availability of an email address. Measurements: Rates of EHR adoption, plans for adoption for those not yet using EHRs, perceived barriers to EHR adoption, and perceived means to overcome those barriers. Results: Response rate was 43.8%. EHR adoption by this group is relatively high at 57.9% and did not vary by practice setting. Although solo practices had a relatively high rate of adoption of 43.5%, EHR adoption remains strongly associated with practice size. Identified barriers to implementation are primarily financial as are the means to overcome those barriers. If current trends continue, adoption will plateau at approximately 68% in the next 6 years. Conclusions: Adoption rate appears to have peaked in this group given current constraints and barriers. Increased outreach efforts and assistance programs will be necessary to achieve EHR adoption in remaining practices, particularly solo and small group practices




School of Medicine



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