It is well-documented that male and female healthcare workers exhibit distinctive electronic health record (EHR) use and burnout patterns. Earlier research has outlined the possible advantages of staff assistance in documenting physician experience and EHR time. However, in primary care settings, it is unclear if and to what extent staff assistance for documentation varies according to gender. Data from the 2018 and 2019 National Electronic Health Records Survey waves were used in this cross-sectional research of primary care physicians (PCPs). Initially, researchers conducted a descriptive analysis of the frequency of staff assistance for documentation, and then they used multivariable logistic regression to determine the adjusted connection of staff support for documentation with gender. Female primary care physicians were less likely than male PCPs to report having staff help for documentation (25.1% vs. 37.3%; P=.04) among the 813 physicians who endorsed having an EHR (92.5% of the sample, representing 296,854 practitioners). The 1-doctor practices and those serving a large percentage of Medicaid patients saw the largest gap. Analyses that accounted for practice ownership and the percentage of patients with Medicaid insurance showed that gender inequalities persisted even after making those adjustments. The discrepancies found have significant implications for the physician workforce, given the good impacts of documentation help and the well-documented gender inequalities in burnout and EHR use times. Identifying the causes of and potential remedies for gender mentioned above inequalities should be the primary focus of future studies.

Source: jabfm.org/content/early/2022/09/01/jabfm.2022.AP.220071