New hospital IT system a pain for senior doctors

More time spent sitting in front of the computer can lead to serious health issues for doctors

A new report from the senior doctor’s association Overlægeforeningen shows that if you are a senior doctor working in the Capital Region, you are much more likely to suffer from muscle and joint pains than colleagues elsewhere in Denmark.

The figures show that 21 percent of senior doctors in the Capital Region are often in pain compared to the average for the rest of the country, which is 11 percent.

According to the association, the new health reform could be the culprit and in particular, Sundhedsplatformen – the IT platform introduced to keep track of patient records.

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Instead of doctors dictating to medical secretaries as in the past, they now have to input much more information in patient’s files themselves. The new system has come under fire for the number of ‘clicks’ necessary to complete the task.

More than coincidence
“It is noteworthy that time-wise and geographically there is a correlation between the introduction of the new IT system and the instances of pain reported, so we take that as meaning that it is very likely that the problems doctors are having are caused by going over to the new system,” Lisbeth Linz, chair of the senior doctor’s association, told Politiken newspaper.

The Capital Region admits that this could be the case. “We can’t discount the possibility that the problem could be caused by the new IT system,” said the region’s HR chief Martin Magelund Rasmussen.

“We’ve implemented a great many new ways of working and especially in the start-up phase, people are spending more time on the computer than they might have to in a couple of years when they are more used to the new work routines,” he added.

The new IT system came into use in 2016 in Herlev and Gentofte hospitals and has subsequently been rolled out in all the other hospitals in the Capital Region.