Sunday, December 4, 2011

Weekend reruns

From 2009:

Local Hospital has been transitioning to an electronic chart system.

This morning, while on rounds, I dialed in to the hospital system to dictate a consult. I was stunned to be told that my privileges had been suspended for delinquent medical records.

This was a shock, as I treat medical records with an obsession. Every Thursday I stop by medical records and ask if there's anything for me to sign. For the last 6 weeks the girl there has politely checked her computer, then said "Nope, thank you for checking".

So I promptly marched down there:

Dr. Grumpy: "Excuse me, do I have anything to sign today?"

Ms. Helpful: (looking at her computer) "Um, nope. Thank you for checking."

Dr. Grumpy: "Well, when I dialed in, it says I've been suspended for medical records delinquency."

Ms. Helpful: "That's correct. You have over 60 charts to complete, 28 of which are delinquent"

Dr. Grumpy: "WHAT!!! Then why didn't you tell me that?!!"

Ms. Helpful: "You only asked me if you had anything to sign. You have nothing to sign. We are all electronic records now. You don't actually sign anything."

Dr. Grumpy (in shock): "Okay... So how do I complete my records?"

Ms. Helpful: "You have to log into the e-Chart system."

Dr. Grumpy: "No one told me we'd completely switched to e-Charts, or that I had records to complete. How was I supposed to know this?"

Ms. Helpful: "Because the first time you sign in to e-Charts it tells you that".

No wonder my hairs are jumping off like lemmings.


Anonymous said...

There is a reason Catch-22 is one of my favorite books.

SuFu PhD said...


vegakitty said...

I'm a medical transcriptionist who has put in a fair amount of time working in a medical records department. That's just ridiculous. Electronic records have so many quirks that they cause more work than they save. And suspending privileges when someone is delinquent is also ridiculous - how are they going to get caught up if their charting privileges are suspended?

Liz said...

Oh, for goodness' sake. I'm a college freshman. I have a grand total of two years' experience working in medical records. I COULD DO A BETTER JOB THAN THAT.

myoclonicjerk said...

This could only be worse if the girl was smug. It would actually be perfect.

medrecgal said...

At least you checked, but that response you got was a bit ridiculous. Now if only I could get some of our regularly delinquent providers to sign their stuff from as far back as September... We can't bill a blasted thing out until it's signed, people!! (And an electronic signature takes all of a few seconds!) But yes, I will also admit that electronic records have problems that paper ones don't. They each have their virtues. And thankfully I'm no Ms. Helpful; I'd tell you that with a courteous flag on the desktop; you don't seem like the kind of guy who'd just ignore flags, though some do! (ARGH!)

cliffintokyo said...

The human factor allows new tech to make monkeys of us all, even the brightest yak herders.

Brian said...

Computer charting is a wonderful advance and saves huge amounts of time, except when it isn't and doesn't.

Packer said...

Electronic filing coupled with bureacrats in control, bend over and kiss your behind good bye.

Anonymous said...

Kind of reminds me of the military where E-3 still wet behind the ears and trailing toilet paper from their shoes Personnel admin specialists were telling E-9 and O-6 "customers") what to do because the E-3s had the power of the electronic system. God forbid they think about what they are saying.

Anonymous said...

Duh lol

Morris said...


That is all.

Anonymous said...

Good thing you can prescribe Ativan for yourself. lol

Tee said...

Please forgive me because I'm sure this is a very dumb question but how are you suppose to catch up on said delinquent charts if you are suspended from the program?

And while you're answering questions, what came first? The chicken or the egg?

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