The quote “simplicity is the ultimate sophistication,” originally from Leonardo da Vinci and the headline of one of Apple’s first marketing brochures in 1977, underscores the design philosophy that led to much of Apple’s success. Unfortunately, modern electronic health record (EHR) documentation workflows are far from simple. Regulatory, legal, reporting, payor, and other documentation requirements have shifted the focus of clinical workflows from patient care to data entry. These requirements result in suboptimal Frankenstein-like EHRs and uncertainty about how to make things better.
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By 2018, there will be over 2,800 retail health clinics in the U.S., nearly 50 percent more than in 2014. Traditionally, retail clinics offered a limited array of services focused on treating mild or seasonal medical issues, such as illness, preventative care and vaccinations, and basic low-level health services. As their popularity has steadily grown, due to their convenience when a problem may not be seen as important enough for a primary care visit, walk-in availability, and extended hours of operation, retail clinics have to accommodate the rise in patients. Now, these companies have shifted their focus towards expanding services, investing in technological capabilities, and growing patient volume.