Defense Date


Graduation Date



Immediate Access

Submission Type


Degree Name



Instructional Leadership Excellence (ILEAD)


School of Education

Committee Chair

V. Robert Agostino

Committee Member

William Barone

Committee Member

Gibbs Kanyongog


Electronic Health Record, Electronic Medical Record, Health Information Technology, Healthcare Management, Patient Record, Medical Practice


The purpose of this study is to examine the use of the electronic health record (EHR) by physicians in Allegheny and Westmoreland counties in Southwestern Pennsylvania. Five research questions were designed to inquire about the physician practice characteristics and its relationship to the EHR deployment, the importance of educational intervention in the EHR adoption, and the physician's belief if the EHR contributes to improvements in the quality of patient care and practice productivity and profitability. A survey of The Use of Electronic Health Records by Medical Practices was used to collect 169 physician responses from the two counties. This survey was divided into six sections: practice characteristics, health information technology, computers and health care, financial considerations, the office practice environment and personal characteristics for a total of 27 questions. These were designed to inquire about the current status of the practice, availability of the electronic health record or its components, current use of information technology, practice and physician perspective about the EHR and information technology and personal demographical questions. This survey was adopted in a modified format from the original article, Correlates of Electronic Health Record Adoption in Office Practices: A Statewide Survey, written by Dr. Steven R. Simon, MD et al, and conducted in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The responses were statistically analyzed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS v. 16) Software. Results of the survey questions show that there is a correlation with having an EHR system and its effect on a practice, leading to improvements in the quality of patient care, and an increase in practice productivity and profitability. In spite of findings such as this, the adoption of EHR in Allegheny and Westmoreland counties is relatively low because of a lack of financial investment in the technology driven by the physician perception that EHR does not add to their personal income. These results show that an opportunity exists to educate physicians on the EHR to point out its contribution to improving the quality of patient care, as well as positively affecting their financial well being. It also indicated the necessity of developing industry-wide common EHR technology adoption initiatives and protocols in order to increase the implementation of EHR in physician offices.