Methods: A combined qualitative and quantitative study that uses data collected from focus groups, observations of primary care encounters and a questionnaire survey of a random sample of general practitioners to describe their use of EPR in primary care.
Results: The overall availability of individual patient records had improved, but the availability of the information within each EPR was not satisfactory. GPs' use of EPRs were efficient and comprehensive, but have resulted in transfer of administrative work from secretaries to physicians. We found no indications of disturbance of the clinician-patient relationship by use of computers in this study.
Conclusion: Although GPs are generally satisfied with their EPRs systems, there are still unmet needs and functionality to be covered. It is urgent to find methods that can make a better representation of information in large patient records as well as prevent EPRs from contributing to increased administrative workload of physicians.