Written by: Center for Care Innovations

This case study was prepared by Kristene Cristobal of Cristobal Consulting, contracted evaluator for the Spreading Solutions That Work program.

When patients visit providers, the experience can be hampered by the use of the electronic health record, whether it’s difficult to use, time consuming, or hinders the clinical documentation process.

At the same time, primary care provider burnout is being driven by the demands of documentation, as clinicians spend extra hours each night writing notes instead of spending time with their families. The result in low satisfaction and high turnover.

Medical scribes are a promising way to help providers focus on their interactions with patients and increase joy in work. An estimated one in five practices with an electronic health record (EHR) currently use scribes.



Hill Country Health and Wellness Center struggled with retaining providers in their rural location. At the same time, providers spent eight to ten hours completing documentation from patient visits in the evenings and on weekends.

To improve retention, recruitment, and provider satisfaction, the team piloted medical scribes with three providers at a satellite site in Redding, Calif. They  are now spreading the program to four more providers at its main site in Round Mountain, Calif.