Session ID: 

Moral Distress with Burden of Documentation: Call to Action

11:30am - 12:30pm Thursday, February 14
Orlando - Orange County Convention Center


Clinician burnout can be tied directly to massive adoption and updates of technology infrastructure under the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act (2009). Electronic health records (EHR) provide many benefits to patients and clinicians but in their current state often create unnecessary documentation burden that is a significant contributor to clinician burnout and reported moral distress (McBride, Tietze, Robchaux, Stokes & Weber, 2018). EHRs and the added clerical burden are reported to result in stressful work environments. In addition to clerical burden, the usability issues of EHRs do not consistently support effective and efficient collaboration and communication across the interprofessional team, which also is noted as a factor in burnout and increased stress of clinicians. This session will address the moral distress due to burden of documentation and engage the attendees in a call to action to optimize EHRs for clinical teams.

Learning Objectives: 

  • Discuss the concept of burden of documentation within the 21st Century Cures Act in terms of usability challenges with certified electronic health records and other point-of-care technology-impacting clinical teams
  • Analyze issues related to burden of documentation and research indicating these challenges are resulting in clinician burnout and moral distress
  • Discuss how interprofessional teams of clinicians, informaticists and technology subject matter experts can utilize quality improvement methods involving workflow redesign, PLAN-DO-STUDY-ACT (PDSA) and evaluation measures to improve usability and clinician satisfaction of EHRs
  • Discuss the Four Component Model (FCM) related to ethical decision making, including ethical sensitivity, judgment, motivation and action. The FCM will be applied with audience participation to a case study related to challenges with usability of EHRs that resulted in a bad outcome


Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center


Clinical Informaticists
IT Professional