Associations of physician burnout with organizational electronic health record support and after-hours charting

J Am Med Inform Assoc. 2021 Apr 23;28(5):960-966. doi: 10.1093/jamia/ocab053.


In 2017, 43.9% of US physicians reported symptoms of burnout. Poor electronic health record (EHR) usability and time-consuming data entry contribute to burnout. However, less is known about how modifiable dimensions of EHR use relate to burnout and how these associations vary by medical specialty. Using the KLAS Arch Collaborative's large-scale nationwide physician (MD/DO) data, we used ordinal logistic regression to analyze associations between self-reported burnout and after-hours charting and organizational EHR support. We examined how these relationships differ by medical specialty, adjusting for confounders. Physicians reporting ≤ 5 hours weekly of after-hours charting were twice as likely to report lower burnout scores compared to those charting ≥6 hours (aOR: 2.43, 95% CI: 2.30, 2.57). Physicians who agree that their organization has done a great job with EHR implementation, training, and support (aOR: 2.14, 95% CI: 2.01, 2.28) were also twice as likely to report lower scores on the burnout survey question compared to those who disagree. Efforts to reduce after-hours charting and improve organizational EHR support could help address physician burnout.

Keywords: Pajama time; electronic medical record; emotional exhaustion; health information technology; optimization; usability.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Burnout, Professional* / epidemiology
  • Electronic Health Records*
  • Health Facility Administration*
  • Health Services Administration
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Physicians*
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Workload