Most Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs) utilize at least a basic Electronic Health Record (EHR), but continue to lag in some of the more advanced EHR functionalities. Additionally, little is known about how CAHs use their EHRs to aid in their quality improvement initiatives and quality measure reporting. In this brief, the Flex Monitoring Team describes findings from interviews with eight CAHs including how they use their EHRs for quality measurement and facilitators and challenges for these activities. There is also a brief discussion of these CAHs' current practices to collect and record demographic and social needs data in their EHR, and how they use these data to identify health inequities in their communities.
In a companion brief for this project, EHR Capabilities and Interoperability in Critical Access Hospitals, the FMT analyzed survey data from nearly 700 CAHs to describe EHR capabilities, an overview of electronic information sharing activities, and details on CAH use of electronic methods to send data.