PPP’s Dr. Bernard writes an op-ed in USA Today about how, despite recent headlines that paint a picture that physicians don’t listen and don’t care, physicians are deeply invested in patients’ wellbeing but face barriers caused by a broken healthcare system. This broken healthcare system has turned qualified physicians “into assembly-line ‘providers’ and data-entry clerks without time to show the empathy that we feel and that our patients need.” Dr. Bernard’s thorough and fact-based op-ed discusses how this is a result of mandates that require physicians to use electronic health records to receive payment for medical services.
Dr. Bernard underscores that “rather than spending most of the visit focused on the actual problem, patients are barraged by a series of questions from an electronic template and spend time discussing the risks and benefits of treatments and tests that might not even be appropriate for them. Even worse, as physicians were encouraged to delegate more and more responsibilities, patients often found themselves talking not to the physician but to a team member working ‘at the top of their license.’”
“It is time for policy experts and patient advocates to use their political influence to advocate for systemic changes that decrease physician burden and incentivize a return to the true physician-patient relationship.”