Updated: Oct 27
Automated charting is an essential part of the future of healthcare and telehealth systems are preparing ways to make this easy and accessible. Studies have found that “only 21% of nurse time is spent on direct patient care.”1 Telehealth platforms are prepared to assist healthcare systems in making the transition to working with automation for improved quality and efficiency of the limited time doctors and nurses have. Transitioning to automated charting maximizes the number of patients, whether that be telehealth appointments or face-to-face, doctors and nurses can visit during the work day. “93% [of clinicians] agree that applying automation to remedy time-intensive documentation processes will be beneficial.”1 Their time and efforts spent in manual charting would be transferred to an automated source, creating space for more clinical interactions overall, as well as improving the quality of these interactions.
What is automated charting and how does it benefit essential healthcare workers? Charting in healthcare, online healthcare, or telehealth, refers to the system in place doctors use to document a patient’s medical journey and communicate vital information to the entire healthcare team. A patient’s chart is a legal document that depicts the patient's healthcare journey- medication administered, treatments performed, tests taken, test results, and interactions between healthcare and patients as just a few examples. It is a detailed and vital medical record that takes time and precision to create. “For every hour of clinical work, physicians spent 2 hours on EHR-related tasks” or tasks that can become automated.3 These tasks can be done by telehealth services and automation infrastructures in a much shorter amount of time and with less room for error. “Time-saving technologies, such as ambient listening and generative AI, can reduce inefficiencies and improve nursing work. Research shows that 30% of administrative tasks for nurses can be automated or reassigned.”1
Reassigning administrative tasks from essential healthcare workers to automated systems and charting improves accuracy and saves time that these vital caregivers can use towards their primary responsibilities and duties. We can relieve a time-consuming burden from the shoulders of doctors and nurses, transferring time and energy toward other vital aspects of healthcare and telehealth. “Healthcare executives… feel AI models enable better customer experiences (61%), faster decision-making (55%) and enhanced employee capabilities (46%).”1 Through telehealth platforms this transition is highly recommended and very possible.
Rachel Sokol, Head of Healthcare Research says, “The findings of the Internet of Healthcare Report show that it is not humanly possible to keep up with the demands placed on humans in healthcare. And it is not fair to ask them to keep pace. The past year has called attention to massive inefficiencies in our healthcare system. To continue weathering this storm, we must support — not strain — our healthcare workers. Automating mundane tasks leads to a motivated workforce with more time to spend on patient care — it’s one of the best ways we can support our healthcare heroes.”2
One key example of how integrating automation processes and ideas into healthcare and telehealth systems is through automating clinical notes. “Automating clinical notes documentation Primary care teams using AI-powered, voice-enabled solution that automatically document clinician-patient conversations for at least 60% of their patient visits can see about nine more patients per month than those without.”1
By handing this process over to automation, doctors can change the entire way they perform visits and e-visits, appointments, and telehealth appointments. Automation is essential in hybrid healthcare. Through all of these different factors and ways of communication, doctors can spend more time and concentration on their patients, and create human connections that will benefit the entire process. “Automating clinical notes documentation Primary care teams using AI-powered, voice-enabled solutions that automatically document clinician-patient conversations for at least 60% of their patient visits can see about nine more patients per month than those without.”1
The process of automated charting has also been found to be supported by the actual patients themselves, research finds that “patients and caregivers are interested in digital health tools. This reveals an opportunity to reinvent the tasks of nurses, shifting them to patients through self-service and collaborative solutions”1
By supporting telehealth platforms through the use of automation we would be supporting the entirety of the healthcare system- not just patients but all doctors, nurses, virtual nurses and doctors, virtual patients, and communities. Whether it be in-person primary care or virtual primary care, automated charting has the potential to create more time for healthcare professionals to visit more patients, lessen their workload, and create an environment where we can focus on essential tasks and the things that matter most.
Accenture. (2023). Solving The Nursign Shortage For The Future. https://www.accenture.com. https://www.accenture.com/content/dam/accenture/final/accenture-com/document/Accenture-Solving-The-Nursing-Shortage-For-The-Future.pdf
New Healthcare report finds that fixing broken administrative processes is the most urgent need to improve patient care, according to 91% of healthcare professionals. Olive. (2021, September 16). https://oliveai.com/media-center/internet-of-healthcare-report
Zhang, X., & Saltman, R. (2022, January 11). Impact of electronic health record interoperability on Telehealth Service Outcomes. JMIR medical informatics. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8790688/