A survey of nearly 2,200 adults across the nation shows only 40 percent believe electronic health records will improve the efficiency of health care, with most respondents also saying patients will be the group that benefits the least from EHRs.

Polling firm Harris Interactive conducted the online survey in February, getting responses from 2,180 adults. The firm's online poll database includes several million people who have agreed to occasionally participate in surveys. Results were weighted to reflect the composition of the U.S. adult population in such areas as region, age, gender, education, race and household income. Rochester, N.Y.-based Xerox Corp., which includes consultancy Affiliated Computer Services, sponsored the survey.

Other results from the survey showed tepid, at best, consumer support for EHRs. Only 26 percent of respondents say they want their medical records digitized; 18 percent have no concerns about EHRs.

Large numbers of respondents--73 to 82 percent across various age groups--have "significant" concerns about the security and integrity of their electronic health records. The group most interested in EHRs is age 55 or older, where 55 percent believe the technology brings better and more efficient care. About 54 percent of adults with a college degree or more education believe the same.

--Joseph Goedert


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