Physician resistance to new information technology

Explained: Why Doctors Resist Adopting Information Technology (IT) in their Healthcare Practice?

March 26, 2022

The presence of physicians has an irreplaceable role in IT growth in the medical sector. These recent years have seen the global healthcare industry take a significant stride regarding digitization. This has resulted in many benefits, the ease of operations and organizational performance being at the top of the list.

Even though there are obvious benefits, we’ve witnessed a resistance in some levels that still restrain medical practitioners from involving IT in their practice. Many believe that an issue with automation & computers can disrupt the quality & security of clinical care that will affect a patient. In addition, any inappropriate use of systems can lead to long-term psychological & physical implications.

How Information Technology has been Beneficial in the healthcare

Before we get down to the resistance points, let’s first understand what information technology has brought to the table in the medical sector.

  • Easy access in remote locations: Thanks to video consultations and the availability of medical records, technology has enabled health access in remote areas.
  • Quick maintenance & documentation of health records: Healthcare records play a crucial role in life-saving in critical situations. Technology helps store, access, and maintain patient records.
  • Health warnings: With integrated healthcare IT systems, it’s easier to track warnings of unexpected drug interactions and improve decision assistance.
  • Quick TAT: Facilities that use healthcare IT systems can complete a thorough audit of patient records in 1.4 hours versus 3.9 hours with paper auditing systems.
  • Quick lab results: More than 75% of laboratory clinicians said that electronic health information allowed them to get lab results faster than the traditional technique.
  • Reduced malpractices: According to a study on medical practices, malpractice claims fell from 49 to 2 when they began using IT in health management.
  • Financial advantage: Probably, inefficient processes are responsible for nearly half of all unnecessary healthcare expenses. According to studies, the economic benefits of integrating healthcare IT for electronic records in large hospitals in the United States ranged from $37 million to $59 million over five years.

Barriers to Acceptance of IT In Healthcare

We wouldn’t be talking about the barriers if it were any other industry, as technology is seen as a value-additive force. However, healthcare is not like every industry, as people’s lives are often at stake. Let’s get into the heads of doctors or physicians and understand what resistance them from adopting information technology.

Showcasing wrong dataOne of the disadvantages of IT in healthcare management is that the machinery or technical instruments can occasionally produce incorrect results. It didn’t always show the doctor the correct results of the patients. Engineers and programmers create specialized machines; errors and glitches can appear at any time. Then, it can also stop working altogether.   If the system displays the incorrect result and the doctor misdiagnoses the patient, their life goes into jeopardy.   This is one of the most harmful aspects of IT in Healthcare for patients.
Delayed recovery
Engineers and programmers create the technological tools and gadgets utilized in hospitals for patient treatment and examinations. If there are any flaws or problems, no one can fix them apart from the professionals because a medical-background person doesn’t know how to recover and repair that machine. This necessitates the assistance of a knowledgeable individual.   As a result, it takes a long time to fix and recover the equipment.
Added cost in the patient’s bill
One of the downsides of medical technology is the higher cost of therapy. Almost all technological treatments and operations, such as robotic surgery and other types of specialized machinery surgeries, are pretty expensive.   On the other hand, most of the patients from rural areas are poor. Poor patients can’t afford expensive operations.
Cybersecurity: The danger in storing the patient’s information
Medical technology also suffers from a lack of security. Hospitals have rules to protect patients’ privacy, including their safety. This law, however, can be defied because of technological advancements in healthcare management. The information on patients stored in the hospital’s computer database is at risk of getting leaked. No matter how much security you put in place, history has taught us that computer systems can be hacked, allowing confidential information regarding a patient’s care to be stolen and modified.  If someone alters the patient’s whole treatment history, it could jeopardize its subsequent therapies.
Lack of empathy
The use of hospital software helps patients get connected to their doctor even when they are in the comfort of their homes. However, this convenience takes away the connection they can build with a doctor for proper care of their issue. The main point of concern here is the lack of physical meets that affect the intensity of communication. In addition, system breaks, internet instability, and screen fatigue increase the chances of miscommunication. In most cases, elderly contact faces the wrath of impersonal communication.

Not So Final Words

Technology has been widely used to revolutionize industries and businesses in recent years. There are advantages and disadvantages of IT in healthcare, given the quick speed of invention and technical breakthroughs.

Existing technological implementations in healthcare have demonstrated the ability to increase diagnosis accuracy and timeliness, treat more patients, and allow improved data sharing across parties who require it.

With such fast-moving advances, there are always drawbacks to overcome and anticipate. There are numerous untapped prospects in healthcare and technology that will help keep Healthcare IT Trends advancement going. In such a scenario, installation of IT in healthcare solely lies in the hands of healthcare, based on the severity of need & priority to what’s needed first!

Similar Read: Healthcare Management – Traits of a successful Healthcare Professional