225842 Health information technology and physician career satisfaction

Monday, November 8, 2010

Keith Elder, PhD, MPH, MPA , Health Services Administration, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL
Jacqueline Wiltshire, PhD, MPH , Institute of Public Health, Florida A & M University, Tallahassee, FL
Ronica N. Rooks, PhD , Department of Health and Behavioral Sciences, University of Colorado Denver, Denver, CO
Rhonda Belue, PhD , Health Policy and Administration, Penn State University, University Park, PA
Lisa C. Gary, PhD , Department of Health Care Organization & Policy, Univ. of Alabama, Birmingham, Birmingham, AL
Background: Health information technology (HIT) has gained increased importance as a means for improving the effectiveness and timeliness of healthcare delivery, patient safety, and patient-centered care. However, physician career satisfaction also has important implications for the delivery of quality medical care. Physicians who are satisfied with their careers provide better overall healthcare compared to dissatisfied physicians, and satisfied physicians are more likely to stay in their practice, enhancing patient continuity. While some have examined physician assessments of HIT and its impact on quality of care, less attention has been focused on the role of HIT in improving the quality of a physician's career. Objective: We examined the impact of HIT on physician career satisfaction using a nationally representative sample. Methods: We performed a retrospective, cross sectional analysis of physician career satisfaction using the Community Tracking Study Physician Survey, 2004-2005. Nine specific types of HIT as well as the overall adoption of HIT in the practice were examined using multivariate logistic regression. The study sample included 5198 physicians, 3016 primary care physicians and 2182 specialists. Results: Physicians who used 5 to 6 (OR=1.46) or 7 to 9 (OR=1.47) types of HIT were more likely than physicians who used 0 to 2 types of HIT to be “very satisfied” with their careers. Information technology usages for communicating with physicians (OR =1.31) and emailing patients (OR=1.35) were positively associated with career satisfaction. PCPs who used technology to write prescriptions were less likely to report career satisfaction (OR=0.67) while specialists who wrote notes using technology were less likely to report career satisfaction (OR=0.75). Conclusions: Using more information technology was the strongest positive predictor of physicians being very satisfied with their careers. Toward that end, health care organizations working in conjunction with providers should consider exploring ways to integrate various forms of HIT into practice.

Learning Areas:
Administration, management, leadership
Communication and informatics

Learning Objectives:
1. To describe the impact of the number of health information technology used on physician career satisfaction based on a nationally representative sample of phyisicians. 2. To explain the association between type of of health information technology used and physician career satisfaction based on a nationally representative sample of physicians.

Keywords: Health Information, Technology

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I conducted the study along with the other authors.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.