Objectives: The Addiction Research and Treatment Corporation evaluated the impact of an electronic medical record system.
Methods: A prospective pre- and postimplementation design was utilized that examined the domains of quality, productivity, satisfaction, risk management, and financial performance.
Results: There were highly statistically significant improvements in timely completion of Annual Medical and 30-Day, 90-Day, and Annual Multidiscipline assessments. There was no statistically significant change in obtaining hepatitis C viral load for hepatitis C antibody-positive patients. The prevalence of risk management events was too low to detect statistically meaningful changes. Patient satisfaction was unchanged pre- and postimplementation, although staff satisfaction trended upward postimplementation. Productivity significantly declined for counseling staff; there was a nonsignificant productivity decline for medical services staff and a nonsignificant productivity increase for case manager staff. Revenue per capita staff increased by 0.6%, while cost per patient visit increased by 5.7%.
Conclusions: Despite less robust results than expected, had we not implemented the electronic system, recent changes in documentation and reimbursement for services would have paralyzed our agency.