News

EMR/EHR News

Next-generation EHRs will drive health data interoperability

The relationship between physicians and EHR systems is a complex one. At one time, these applications acted as repositories for digitized patient charts. Now, more practices are using these systems to help manage patient data generated within the facility, as well as data captured from multiple sources, such as medical imaging systems, referring physicians and lab...

Looking ahead to 2014: eHealth Program Milestones

2014 will be a big year for CMS eHealth programs— there are key deadlines for the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs; an expansion of eReporting will be coming up; the implementation of quality reporting program alignment begins; and the ICD-10 transition takes place on October 1st. Read more at "Looking ahead...

Rural doctors slow to adopt electronic medical records

These days when you go to the doctor, many rely on an electronic health records system. With just a few clicks of a mouse, they can bring up your medical history, prescribe you medication, or chart your test results. The 2009 Recovery Act actually set aside $20 billion to help health care providers ditch the paper records and go electronic. The idea was to cut soaring health care costs in the U.S. But while physicians...

HHS updates HIPAA rules for electronic health records

The Department of Health and Human Services issued a new rule that it said was necessary to protect the security of health information stored online. As required by the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act, which was part of the 2009 economic stimulus bill, HHS said it would change patient privacy rules in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act in order to provide for privacy and security protection for information stored in electronic...

Electronic Health Records Shown to Improve the Quality of Patient Care

A new study by Weill Cornell Medical College researchers, published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, provides compelling evidence that electronic health records (EHRs) enhance the quality of patient care in a community-based setting with multiple payers, which is representative of how medicine is generally practiced across the United States. Read about it here.

Electronic health records improving efficiency

Electronic health records and Alaska’s health information exchange are improving quality and safety of medical care in Fairbanks, and giving our doctors, nurses and families secure access to our medical information when and where we need it. Read the entire story here, via 

EHRs boost adherence, monitoring in diabetics

Use of electronic health records 
improves medical outcomes among patients with diabetes, according to a recent study conducted by Kaiser Permanente. Read the rest here, via Drug Store News.

Improving Patient Care through Better Medication Reconciliation

The American Pharmacists Association (APhA) and the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) recently released Improving Care Transitions: Optimizing Medication Reconciliation. The white paper provides a better understanding of the medication reconciliation process during transitions in care, its effect on patient care and outcomes and how pharmacists can contribute to the improvement of this process through medication therapy management (MTM). View the entire white...

The impact of electronic health records on pharmacy practice

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 set ambitious goals for the nation to integrate information technology into healthcare delivery. The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act segment of the bill provides incentives for Medicare and Medicaid providers to use certified electronic health records (EHRs) to achieve specified improvements in healthcare and implement a nationwide EHR system by 2014. Meaningful use criteria are being promulgated in...

Federal Incentives for Implementing EHR's are Paying Off.

Nearly $4.5 billion in federal incentives to implement electronic health-record systems has been paid out thus far, with program enrollments and payments still increasing in the first quarter of 2012, according to an analysis of the CMS' latest data (PDF).There are now more than a quarter of a million (225,765) actively...

Docs helping docs embrace IT

At last year's meeting of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society, held in February in Orlando, Fla., a small group of well-known health information technology leaders from the public and private sectors met to discuss the need to create a resource for physicians who were struggling to implement IT systems in their practices.

Peace Corps plans EHR system in 2013

The Peace Corps plans to acquire a comprehensive electronic health records system to serve its volunteers stationed in 77 developing countries. The agency wants to develop a proof of concept electronic health record (EHR) and test it in a limited pilot by September and deploy it in fiscal 2013. Read more about "Peace Corps plans EHR system in...

CMS EHR programs paid $2.5 billion in 2011

The Medicare and Medicaid electronic health record program has paid more than $2.5 billion to physicians and hospitals in incentive payments for all of 2011, with December contributing to the steep growth curve. In 2011, 176,000 providers have registered in total for the Medicare and Medicaid incentive programs, said Robert Tagalicod, director of CMS’ Office of eHealth Standards and...

Patients want to read, share their medical records

Patients want easy access to any notes their doctor has recorded about them, and they want the right to let others view their medical information, according to a pair of U.S. studies.Read the complete story here. Source: Reuters, reporting by Kerry Grens in New York, editing by Steve Orlofsky.

Over 100,000 Primary Care Providers Adopting EHRs

More than 100,000 primary care providers are adopting certified electronic health records (EHRs) through Regional Extension Centers, according to the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC). "This compelling milestone demonstrates strong interest in adoption and meaningful use among community health centers, small practices and rural providers that can lead to improvements in health and healthcare," stated National IT Coordinator Dr. Farzad...

EHR Market to Reach $6.5 Billion in 2012

The total U.S. market for electronic health record (EHR) systems could reach $6.5 billion next year, largely because of the EHR meaningful use incentive payment program, according to Frost & Sullivan. The U.S. market earned revenues of $973.2 million in 2009, and since then hospitals' interest in EHRs has skyrocketed primarily due to financial subsidies provided by the HITECH Act. The rate of hospital EHR adoption over the next several years is expected to expand particularly...

Physicians Require More EHR Training

Physicians need at least three to five days of training to feel satisfied with their electronic health-record system, and being able to easily use the EHR functions required for meaningful-use incentive bonuses took two weeks of training—but almost half of the doctors responding to a recent survey reported that they received three days or less of EHR training.

EHR Users More Adherent With Medications

A group of Cleveland researchers found that practices using electronic health-record systems had higher rates of compliance with some clinical quality improvement measures than did practices using paper records.

EHR Data Crucial to Genomics Research, Says Kaiser Permanente

Genetics researchers from Kaiser Permanente and the University of California at San Francisco have reached what they describe as a milestone in a two-year research project by genotyping and analyzing the chromosome tips of 100,000 volunteer research subjects.

EHRs Better Data Source Than Medicaid

A study of patients with diabetes suggests that electronic health records (EHRs) often contain more comprehensive data on patient care quality than Medicaid claims databases. "Relying solely on Medicaid claims data is likely to substantially underestimate the quality of care," the researchers concluded. Read more at "EHRs...

EHR Market to Reach $6 Billion by 2015

The U.S. market for electronic health records is expected to grow to $6 billion by 2015 from $2.2 billion in 2009, a increase of more than 18% a year, according to the U.S. Electronic Medical Records (EMR) Market, 2010-2015 (Market Share, Winning Strategies and Adoption Trends) report from the research and consulting firm MarketsandMarkets. Read more at "EMR...

AHRQ to Study Hurdles in EHR Adoption

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and RTI International, a research organization, will conduct a two-year, $425,000 study to identify hurdles that Medicaid providers face in meeting electronic health record (EHR) meaningful use criteria. Read more at "What Are the EHR Meaningful Use Barriers for...

EHR Saves Patient Data From Being Lost During Tornado

The devastating tornado that hit Joplin, MO, scattered paper health records at St. John's Regional Medical Center as far as 75 miles away. However, the hospital still had access to patient data on an electronic health record (EHR) system it implemented three weeks before the storm. Read more at "lost medical records complicate Joplin hospital's recovery" 

Most California Physicians Use EHRs

A majority (55%) of California primary-care physicians now use electronic health-record systems, according to a new report (PDF) from the California HealthCare Foundation. The 41-page report, "The State of Health Information Technology in California," also showed, as has been found in similar surveys, that when it comes to IT adoption, the size of a physician practice...

EHRs Environmentally Friendly

A new study from researchers at Kaiser Permanente is touting the environmental benefits of using electronic health records, including reduced paper use and lower gasoline consumption. Researchers developed a model to measure the environmental impact of KP HealthConnect, the system's EHR, which, at the time of the study, was used by 36 hospitals and more than 450 medical offices. They analyzed a number of variables, including the average weight of paper charts, rates of...

EHRs Can Assist in Genetic Research

Electronic health records can help speed up the collection of data for genetic research on various diseases, including type 2 diabetes, dementia and cardiac conduction, according to researchers. "The hard part of doing genetic studies has been identifying enough people to get meaningful results. Now we've shown you can do it using data that's already been collected in electronic medical records," stated lead author Abel Kho.

EHRs Can Help Physicians Order Treatments

Electronic clinical-decision support reminders can successfully steer physicians away from ordering unnecessary treatments, according to results of a new study published in the journal Pediatrics. Researchers from the Stanford University School of Medicine and Lucile ...

EHR Users Greatly Satisfied With Systems

Ambulatory-care physicians who have implemented an electronic health-record system are largely satisfied with their purchases, and their satisfaction increases if they have their EHR systems optimized, according to data from a survey by the Medical Group Management Association. The survey also indicates that financial benefits accruing to the practices tend to follow...

EHRs Used to Improve Healthcare Quality

Data from electronic health records will be used in a new quality-improvement program launched by three major health and disease research organizations to help physicians use evidence-based guidelines in patient care. The Guidelines Advantage is an outpatient-based collaboration of the American Cancer Society, the American Diabetes Association and the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. It will use information from EHRs to measure provider...

EHRs and Health It Integral to National Vaccine Plan

Electronic health records and other health IT tools will play a significant role in the Department of Health and Human Services' 10-year National Vaccine Plan. According to the plan, EHRs and vaccine registries will improve immunization recordkeeping and increase vaccine safety. The vaccine plan also calls for developing a system for collection of medical histories and biological specimens from people who have an adverse event following an immunization....

IOM Supports Using EHRs to Improve Community Health

An Institute of Medicine (IOM) committee is looking into using various data sources, including electronic health records (EHRs), to measure population health. IOM wants to identify community-level activities and habits to maintain an individual's health. The report notes that "our lack of knowledge" about how to reverse poor mortality trends in the U.S. "is due in large part to significant inadequacies in the system for gathering, analyzing and communicating health information...

Majority of Americans Support Use of EHRs

More than three out of four Americans support the use of electronic health records, and nearly two out of three claim the benefit of being able to access their records outweighs privacy concerns, according to a survey by the University of Chicago's National Opinion Research Center. "Our core finding is that a large majority of Americans support use of health IT to improve healthcare and safety and reduce costs," stated Daniel Gaylin, executive director for research at the...

NACDS Patient Care Database Doubled in Size

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) Foundation is pleased to announce that the NACDS Foundation's Patient Care Database – launched in February 2010 – has more than doubled in size. The Patient Care Database is a free, publicly-accessible and searchable healthcare resource dedicated to providing a convenient portal to information on pharmacist-provided patient care services beyond dispensing prescription medications. "The Patient Care Database is truly a...

Four in 10 Physicians Seek Federal EHR Incentive Payments

Forty-one percent of physicians plan to seek federal incentive payments for the meaningful use of electronic health-record systems, according to a National Center for Health Statistics survey. Read more on "Four in 10 docs plan to see EHR money: HHS" -

Eight out of 10 Hospitals Plan to Install EHR Systems

More than eight in 10 hospitals (81%) plan to achieve meaningful use of electronic health-record systems under the federal program that offers incentive payments to boost the use of health information technology under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, according to a news release from HHS.Also, 65% of hospitals will enroll during Stage 1 of the incentive program, which...

4000 Healthcare Providers Registered for EHR Incentive Payments in Four Days

Four days after registration began, about 4,000 healthcare providers have started the registration process for incentive payments based on the meaningful use of their electronic health records (EHRs). Providers are using the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services registration portal, which became operational Jan. 3. Read more on "CMS counts 4,000 providers...

Doctors Begin Receiving EHR Payments

Two Oklahoma physicians are among the first recipients nationwide of government incentive payments for the use of electronic health-record systems. Read more on "CMS issues first EHR payments" - email Rebecca Vesely

EHR Internet Portal Goes Live

Hospitals and healthcare professionals seeking federal incentives for implementing certified electronic health record (EHR) systems will be able to use the new Medicare and Medicaid EHR registration website that went live Jan. 3. Read more on "Portal for EHR Incentive Program goes live"

ONC Issues Final Rule on HIT Certification

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) released the final rule to establish a permanent certification program for health information technology (HIT). "This final rule completes the two-phased approach ONC began with the proposed rule issued in spring 2010 and includes several important improvements to our certification processes," stated Dr. David Blumenthal, national coordinator for health IT.

CDC Director States EHRs Essential to Public Health

Electronic health records play an important role in promoting public health, said Thomas Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, at the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology's 2010 Update conference.EHR systems can be key tools within the six key areas targeted by the CDC for seeking substantial improvements in the health status of Americans, he said. The targeted areas of improvement are food,...

EHR Use Rising Among Office-Based Physicians

Adoption of health information technology is growing among office-based physicians, according to preliminary results of a survey released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. More than half of physicians reported using at least a partial electronic health-record system in their practices, according to 2010 estimates from the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, conducted by the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics. That figure is up slightly from...

State Department to Establish EHR System

The U.S. State Department plans to implement an electronic health record (EHR) system to protect the health of diplomatic workers in embassies and consulates worldwide, according to an announcement in the Federal Business Opportunities (FBO) website. Read more on "State Dept. plans EHR for overseas health clinics"

ONC Releases EHR Data-Sharing Software

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) unveiled the first version of new software that will allow basic data exchange between healthcare providers, a step critical to complying with Stage 1 rules for meaningful use of electronic health records. Read more on 'Direct Project completes first models of simple NHIN"...

EHRs Improve Patient Care According to GAO Report

The use of electronic health records supports efforts to improve patient care within integrated healthcare delivery systems, according to a report from the Government Accountability Office. The GAO report details the strategies that 15 public and private integrated delivery systems serving medically underserved populations have employed to provide better-coordinated and higher-quality care. In interviews with GAO researchers, officials from the surveyed ID systems said...

iHealth Alliance Launches EHR Online Safety Reporting System

Healthcare providers will be able to report safety issues linked to electronic health record (EHR) systems using a website launched by the iHealth Alliance in collaboration with federal agencies, the PDR Network and other healthcare stakeholders. Read more on "EHR Online Safety System Launched"

Healthcare Groups Promote Health Information Technology At Universities

Three not-for-profit healthcare groups have joined forces to promote health information technology education at colleges and universities nationwide. Goals for the collaborative effort to develop a model curriculum for healthcare IT management education include having materials ready for classrooms by fall of 2013.The participating organizations are the Association of University Programs in Health Administration, the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management...

EHR Use Improves Efficiency, Quality, and Profits

David Allard, chief medical information officer at Henry Ford Health System in Detroit, said Henry Ford's 22-year experience shows that using electronic health records improves efficiency and quality and leads to higher profits. Rodger Prong, executive director with Waterford Township-based Oakland Physician Network Services, a 400-member physician organization, said most of the 40 physicians in the network who use electronic health records and disease registries also have a...

Use of EHRs Limits Unneeded Tests

A computerized alert curbed rates of unnecessary blood testing among elderly patients and reduced physicians' reliance on an often-inaccurate diagnostic test, according to a new study from Kaiser Permanente's Institute for Health Research. The D-dimer test, a tool used to help diagnose deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism, is only 35% accurate in patients over 65 years of age. In response, researchers implemented an alert within Kaiser's electronic health record,...

EHR Use On the Rise

One out of two healthcare providers adopted a "comprehensive" or "partial" electronic health record (EHR) system, according to a survey by CompTIA, an IT trade association. Some 59% of those who adopted systems are completely or mostly satisfied with the technology. Read more on "Study Finds Health IT Adoption Growing"

New York State to Create EHR System

The New York state health department and the New York eHealth Collaborative, a state-designated public-private partnership, submitted a $129 million plan to create a statewide electronic health-record network with the U.S. Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology.  David Whitlinger, executive director of the New York eHealth Collaborative, said the CMS must approve the plan, which is the first step in the efforts to connect existing regional...

EHR Use Improves Financial Performance

Medical practices that implement electronic health records (EHRs) systems report stronger financial performance than those using paper-based systems, according to a report released by the Medical Group Management Association. Read more on "Study: EHR Cuts Long-Term Operating Costs"

EHRs Continue to Be Highly Accurate

Read more on "Assessing the Accuracy of Drug Profiles in an Electronic Medical Record System of a Washington State Hospital" Brett Platte, MHPA; Fevzi Akinci, PhD; and Yunus Guc, MAA medication reconciliation program is associated with a high rate of perfectly accurate drug profiles and may assist in reducing adverse drug events.

Florida Healthcare Groups Collaborate on EHR

Shands HealthCare, Orlando Health and the University of Florida formed a partnership to develop a common electronic health record (EHR) system to improve healthcare quality and access for 2.5 million people in Central Florida. Read more on "FL Health Systems Announce Partnership"

EHRs Can Improve Reporting of Medication Side Effects

Electronic health records (EHRs) could help improve the reporting of serious medication-related side effects, according to a study published in the journal Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety. The research suggests that widespread EHR use could help alert FDA to possible problems with specific drugs. The study, conducted at Boston's Brigham & Women's Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital, was sponsored by Pfizer.

Maryland Launches Health Information Exchange

Maryland's statewide health information exchange is now live, with three hospitals, three radiology services providers and two diagnostics companies being the first to share patient information through the exchange, according to a news release from the exchange's developer, the Baltimore-based Chesapeake Regional Information System for our Patients. Holy Cross Hospital of Silver Spring, Suburban Hospital of Bethesda and Montgomery General Hospital of Olney are the...

EHR System Saves Pediatric Practice

A pediatric practice on the brink of bankruptcy is saved after implementing an electronic medical records system that helped it turn profitable in a month, and recoup all its losses in a year. Read more on "Cutting Costs and Reaching Profitability with an EMR System"

Kaiser Permanente to Donate Terminology System

Kaiser Permanente announced plans to donate its systemwide terminology system, known as Convergent Medical Terminology, for open access in an effort to ease providers' transition to electronic health records, according to joint news release from HHS and the Oakland, Calif.-based integrated health plan.  Kaiser operates the largest private-sector EHR in the world and uses CMT as an interoperable source for clinical definitions, billing codes and language. CMT...

E-Prescribing on the Rise

Surescripts released data showing that the number of U.S. healthcare personnel who use e-prescribing systems increased to 200,000, up from 156,000 at the end of 2009. The number is expected to continue rising as more healthcare providers seek federal incentives for electronic health record (EHR) adoption. Meanwhile, the Certification Commission for Health Information Technology (CCHIT) started taking vendor applications for electronic health record product certification...

ONC Helping Healthcare Providers Qualify for EHRs

In a Federal Times interview, Dr. David Blumenthal, the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, discusses how his office is working to help healthcare providers qualify for incentive payments for the meaningful use of electronic health records (EHRs). Read more on "This doctor's task: Get hospitals to go digital"

EHRs Can Help Discover Arterial Disease

By using electronic medical records (EMRs), researchers were able to determine genetic variants that influence susceptibility to peripheral arterial disease, a condition marked by arterial plaque build-up, usually in the legs, that is associated with "significant mortality and morbidity," according to a Mayo Clinic study. Read more on "Study show EMRs' potential to...

EHR Systems Shorten Emergency Room Wait Times

Patients treated at hospital emergency rooms that use all-digital-records systems are more likely to have shorter stays than at hospitals with paper or basic digital-records systems, according to a study by an Arizona State University professor. The findings come as several Arizona hospital systems and physicians seek to bolster their use of electronic health records while the federal government prepares to provide up to $27 billion to compel hospitals and doctors to adopt digital-records...

EHR Systems Already Exit and are Waiting to be Used

A new electronic health-record system designed to coordinate and share patient information has the potential to streamline healthcare—but only if the system is used, members of a state health council said Wednesday. "I have an electronic system already, but the thing is it's not being used," said physician Stephen Sebert, council chair of the West Virginia State Medical Association. Read more on...

CMS Publishes Rules for Medicaid State Reimbursement

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published its final guidance on Medicaid health IT funding, detailing three requirements states must meet to receive 90% of federal matching funds for administrative expanses related to the meaningful use incentive program. States can receive a 100% federal funding match for incentive payments distributed to Medicaid providers who adopt EHRs under the meaningful use criteria.

NIST Release Health IT Testing Procedures

The federally supported National Institute of Standards and Technology has published a set of procedures for testing health information technology as part of a certification program that will determine healthcare providers' eligibility for government subsidies for the purchase of electronic health-record systems. The NIST procedures are to be used by testing and certification organizations recognized by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology....

CMS Issues Guidelines for EHR Reimbursement

Providers gleaned new insights into how they will receive subsidy payments for the purchase and use of health information technology as the CMS issued supplementary guidelines to earlier rules on the administration of the Medicaid portion of the federal electronic health-record program under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. In a 19-page letter to state Medicaid...

HHS Focuses on Health IT to Improve Care

In its draft strategic plan for 2010-2015, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) emphasized the potential of health information technology for fostering innovation, reducing costs and transforming healthcare delivery. The plan describes how the agency intends to promote public awareness about health IT and advance its healthcare goals through blogs, text messages, online competitions and other Web 2.0 strategies.

AMA to Offer Remote-Hosted EHRs

The American Medical Association will offer remote-hosted electronic health-record and practice management systems from NextGen Healthcare Information Systems through the AMA's information technology platform, according to a news release from NextGen. The EHR and PMS will be provided using the software-as-a-service delivery model on a subscription basis, according to the release. The AMA announced...

HHS to Develop Nationwide Health Information Network

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will pay $6 million to information technology services provider Stanley Inc. to help federal health officials develop the Nationwide Health Information Network (NHIN). As part of the two-year agreement, Stanley will assist HHS's Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT in enrolling participants into the NHIN.

CMS Awards $5.75 Million to Six States to Create EHRs

The CMS has awarded $5.75 million in federal matching funds to six states and the District of Columbia to help Medicaid providers expand the use of electronic health records. The funding, provided for under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, is earmarked for a health information technology incentives program. "Meaningful and interoperable use of EHRs in Medicaid will increase healthcare efficiency, reduce medical errors and improve quality...

EHR Subsidies Expected to Begin May 2011

The money could begin flowing from Medicare to providers for the purchase of electronic health-record systems as early as May 2011, a CMS official said today. On the other hand, despite the CMS' recent publication of more than 800 pages of rules governing the program, not all of the details of its operations are clear. —

Illinois Creates State EHR System

Illinois healthcare providers moved one step closer to interoperable electronic data sharing as Gov. Pat Quinn signed a bill creating the Health Information Exchange Authority. Under the new law, the state authority will establish and oversee the Illinois Health Information Exchange and will work to promote adoption of electronic health-record systems and health information exchange participation. Illinois will receive $18.8 million in federal funds from the...

Healthcare IT Certification Group Pledges to Go Beyond Federal Minimum Requirements

  The Certification Commission for Health Information Technology has launched several new certification programs under its "CCHIT Certified" brand that aim to go beyond federal minimum requirements and meet longer-term goals for use of electronic health records with integrated functionality, interoperability and security.Although CCHIT has applied to be an authorized testing and...

Quality Medication Therapy Management Depends on Quality Healthcare IT

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — In a plea to Congress, the chain pharmacy industry renewed its support for the rapid nationwide adoption of health information technology as a major tool in the nation’s drive to improve patient compliance with medication therapy.

Pharmacists Improve Patient Health and Lower Healthcare Costs

RALEIGH, N.C. (Jul. 22) A healthy relationship with a community pharmacist can improve health outcomes for patients and save money, a new collaborative study from North Carolina-based Kerr Drug and the University of North Carolina revealed. Those benefits stem from direct interventions in patient therapy by pharmacists, coupled with a coordinated approach to the patient’s treatment regimen by his or her pharmacist and doctor, according to...

Researchers Using EHRs to Study Comparative Effectiveness

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) plans to develop a national, web-based inventory of comparative effectiveness research that would be accessible to healthcare providers and the public. Read more on "HHS to create online inventory of research on effective treatments"

Physicians and Hospitals Pursue $27.3 billion in Federal Aid to Buy Health IT Systems

Part one of a two-part series. The race is on—finally. Physicians and hospitals are now able to chase freely after their share of some $27.3 billion in federal incentives to help them buy health information technology systems—all in the name of improved efficiency and higher-quality patient care.  Read more on "Come and get IT: ready to...

Differing Opinions On CMS's Meaningful Use Rules for EHR Systems

Organizations including the Medical Group Management Association applauded federal officials for taking their recommendations into account when they relaxed certain requirements for demonstrating "meaningful use" of electronic health records. However, the American Hospital Association (AHA) and other groups raised concerns about the new regulations, including the exclusion of individual hospitals that operate in multi-campus facilities and exacerbate the digital divide in...

Hospitals, Pharmacies, Doctors, and More Clamoring for Federal Money to Create EHRs

Louisiana health care providers, from hospitals to pharmacies, dentists and physician practices, are in line for federal grants to expand their use of electronic health records under a program that U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius finalized Tuesday...

An EHR Designed for the Elderly

University of Missouri researchers are developing an electronic health record system that aims to increase efficiency and accuracy, improve patient outcomes and reduce costs of long-term care for a population of older adults expected to almost double by 2030. Read more on "EHR developd for long-term care holds promise"  

Doctors Shy Away From EHRs Simply From Lack of Knowledge

If physician Mark Rood wasn't so good with computers, the electronic health-record system that he and the other two doctors at South Russell Family Practice use would have been out of their price range.Many private practice doctors in small offices don't use EHR systems, often because they feel they can't afford such systems or don't have the technical expertise to implement them and keep them running.

HHS Tightens HIPAA Privacy Protection

Patients' health information would be given greater protection against unauthorized disclosure and use for marketing purposes under a new rule proposed by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The rule would amend the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996. "The benefits of health IT can only be fully realized if patients and providers are confident that electronic health information is kept private and secure at all times,"...

ONC to Enact Standards for the Federal NHIN Exchange Network

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) plans to propose a new rule for the Nationwide Health Information Network (NHIN) that would allow more organizations to participate. The NHIN will enable healthcare organizations to exchange information securely through the internet. As a first step in the rulemaking process, ONC will publish a request for information in August to receive public comment on the governance process, then expects to...

Indiana Looking for Health Information Technology Vendor

Indiana Health Information Technology is looking for help spending a $10.3 million federal grant aimed at expanding health information exchange.The state of Indiana received the grant in March for the state-chartered not-for-profit organization under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. According to the request for proposals, projects should support four "pillars" of the effort: They should let providers link to existing health-information organizations;...

States will feel the squeeze under reform

In a report regarding the remarks of former Senate majority Leader Bill Frist at the Healthcare Financial Management Association's Annual National Institute, states will struggle to meet demands of health care reform. Read more on "States will feel the squeeze under reform, says former Senate majority leader"  

CMS Lauches Website to Clarify EHR Information

In an effort to help providers navigate new health information technology requirements and qualify for meaningful-use payments, the CMS has launched an EHR Incentive Program website detailing information about its electronic health-record system incentive programs, which are scheduled to launch in 2011.

Cash Incentives Spur Patients to Take All Their Medications

Many programs to pay patients to properly take their medications, such as a Philadelphia program to pay patients $10 or $100 a day, a Traumatic Brain Injury Network program to give patients a $20 giftcard if they completed their first treatment phase in 30 days, and a British program to pay patients about $22 for regular antipsychotic injections, have had amazing results.  Many of the patients engaged in these programs began regularly and properly taking their medications, reducing...

While Few Americans Use EHRs, Many Expect Their Doctor To

Fewer than 10% of U.S. adults use electronic health records (EHRs) or e-mail their doctors, and nearly half are unaware if their physicians have an EHR system, according to a Harris Interactive/HealthDay poll. "The general public only has a vague idea, only very limited understanding, of what all this is about," stated Humphrey Taylor, chairman of The Harris Poll.

Pharmaceutical Companies Use EHRs to Improve Clinical Trial Recruitment

A group of pharmaceutical companies, academic medical centers and healthcare organizations launched a new collaborative that aims to tap into electronic health records (EHR) to bolster clinical trial recruitment. Members of the collaborative, called Partnership to Advance Clinical electronic Research (PACeR), include Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson and Merck & Co.

MTM Programs a Top Priority for NACDS

A Drug Topics editorial by Steven C. Anderson, IOM, CAE and CEO of NACDS covers the new healthcare reform law and medication adherence, and states that "There is substantial evidence that we are reversing public ignorance of pharmacy's role in healthcare". NACDS also emphasized the findings of the New England Healthcare Institute that poor medication adherence imposes $290 billion in annual costs, or approximately 13% of healthcare expenditures, Mr. Anderson...

EHR Use Speeds Disability Claims

Digital records to speed disability claims Julie Kendall waited 3 1/2 years before she was approved for Social Security disability assistance, part of the wait caused by gathering all of her medical records. Such long waits are not unusual. But now the Social Security Administration's Indianapolis office will tap into technology to speed up the process.(Link no longer available.) (registration may be required). —...

Maryland, New Mexico, and Utah Implementing EHR Exchange

Maryland, New Mexico and Utah have received the green light from HHS' Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology to move forward with a plan to implement a functioning health information exchange. The three states are working to streamline the transfer of electronic health data among hospitals, physicians and patients through these exchanges

Use of EHR Lowers Heart Attack Rates

A study reported in the New England Journal of Medicine recorded a 24% decline in heart attacks and a significant reduction in deaths since 1999 in one northern California population. The study of over 46,000 hospitalizations between 1999 and 2008 found a 62% reduction in the most serious form of heart attacks, known as STEMI (segment elevation myocardial infarction), stated Dr. Alan S. Go, a leader of the study. Dr. Go attributes the lowered heart attack toll to...

Bayer Releases iPhone App

SAN ANTONIO - German drug maker Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals has created an iPhone application that it called the first developed for patients using a specific multiple sclerosis medication, Bayer said last week. Read...

West Virginia Builds EHR Center

West Virginia has received $6 million in federal stimulus money to establish a health information technology center to provide education, training, and support services for primary-care providers. Local and state officials expect the center to be up and running by this summer. The center will help select and purchase electronic health-record systems, implement services, and guide privacy and security issues.

Healthcare IT Update

ARRA-mandated healthcare IT maintain ambitious pace to implement EHRs available by 2014. Read more on "50,000 new health IT workers might be needed"

When Patients Don’t Fill Their Prescriptions

Many drug prescriptions never get filled, sometimes with deadly consequences. A New York Times on the Web article written by Pauline W. Chen, M.D. explores the varied reasons that medication nonadherence, or noncompliance, remains a significant healthcare problem. Referencing studies that found as many as half of all patients did not follow their doctors' medication advice, Dr. Chen states the advent of better tracking systems and the more...

CMS Subsidizes States' Medicaid IT

New Jersey, Louisiana, Maryland, and Minnesota each receive matching grants for Medicaid programs HIT needs. Read more on "CMS announces $9 million in funding for Medicaid IT" 

HIT Preview offered at April ASAP Conference

During ASAP's annual Industry and Technology Conference, speakers highlighted growing opportunities for pharmacists to provide patient care and MTM services through support of health information technology (HIT). Read more on "ASAP conference offers HIT preview"

At Dallas summit, health professionals seek tech experts' help on medical data

The Texas Health Information Technology Summit aims to answer health providers' questions about e-prescribing, stimulus funding, work flow design and project management.

Stimulus cash to help doctors go electronic

Columbus-area doctors who don't have the time or money to find an electronic medical-records system for their office will soon get help. Gov. Ted Strickland announced yesterday that the Central Ohio Health Information Exchange will receive $6 million in federal funds to help 1,352 primary-care physicians switch from paper to electronic health records. Moving to an electronic system is expected to save money by reducing repetition of tests and medical errors, proponents...

Personal Health Record Use On The Rise: Survey

Article discussing the results of a study funded by the private California HealthCare Foundation that shows the public's use of PHRs has doubled over the past two years. Read more on "Rich more likely to use eHealth records but poor benefit more, survey finds"

Physicians: Health IT Roundup: Buyers' Remorse, Usage Survey

Huffington Post Investigative Fund: The federal government has made investing in electronic medical records a priority by channeling billions of dollars to help doctors and hospitals go paperless, "[b]ut there's also concern that the government may not be doing enough to ensure that taxpayer money isn't wasted on faulty systems. What's more, doctors often have little expertise in buying electronic health records, commonly called EHRs, and do not always know what questions to ask or what...

First, "do no harm"

Consumers hear the words “electronic medical record,” and they fear medical identity theft and privacy violations. But do they hear the word “hospital” and fear a life-threatening medical error? According to William Braithwaite, MD, chief medical officer at Anakam, Inc., paper records can’t keep patients safe, nor do they guarantee privacy. I recently heard Braithwaite, the former senior adviser on health information policy for the Department of Health and Human Services,...

Minn. practice pulls EMR data to screen high-risk groups

Now here's a perfect example of how properly implemented EMRs can encourage preventive care: HealthPartners Medical Group in Minneapolis is mining its records to raise awareness of and improve screening for colorectal cancer among African-American patients. The mortality rate from colorectal cancer is 48 percent higher for blacks than for whites nationally, according to HealthPartners Medical Director Dr. Brian Rank. "Our goal is to save lives by ensuring that more African-American...

Getting Personal

Electronic health records, when paired with genetic information, may pave the way for a health care revolution. What is the future for personalized medicine? Read more on "Getting Personal"

HHS to establish HIT Research Center to support extension centers

Hey all you EMR and EHR fans at CMS, ONC, HIMSS, EHRA, AAFP and the like--get ready for yet another handy acronym in the world of ARRA/HITECH: HITRC, short for Health Information Technology Research Center. That's the name for a new HHS office that will support the 60 to 70 regional health IT extension centers planned to help physicians adopt EMRs and gain federal bonus payments for meaningful use. HHS soon will issue about $50 million in task orders to establish the HITRC,...

EMR enables Partners In Health relief efforts in Haiti

If you've been following Haiti relief efforts since the Jan. 12 earthquake sent that troubled country deeper into chaos, you've probably seen the name "Partners In Health." That group, a Boston-based not-for-profit with loose ties to Harvard University and Partners HealthCare System, has nine established medical clinics in Haiti, and has developed an open-source EMR called OpenMRS, now in use in nearly two dozen developing countries across the globe. In Haiti, OpenMRS and a...

CDC: More than 40 percent of docs have EMRs

There are only three types of lies: Lies, damned lies and statistics. And in the spirit of Benjamin Disraeli (or Mark Twain or whoever actually originated that phrase) comes the annual National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey from the CDC, which estimates that 43.9 percent of office-based U.S. physicians used some form of EMR or EHR in 2009. That number, considered a preliminary estimate, is up slightly from 41.5 percent in 2008. Compare and contrast that to the less than 20 percent of...

Survey: Hospitals will struggle to meet "meaningful use"

All the pundits, vendors and interest groups have weighed in on the Dec. 30 proposal for "meaningful use" of EMRs, but what do the people who actually have to demonstrate meaningful use to earn Medicare bonus payments think? According to a survey from Computer Sciences Corp., hospitals on average are about halfway toward meeting the proposed criteria, and only one-quarter of those queried have 70 percent of the requirements covered, suggesting that HHS and CMS may have set the bar...

Microsoft's Ballmer: Focus on the patient for long-term gains

It's not exactly a secret that various technology companies stand to profit handsomely from the estimated $20 billion infusion of federal dollars into electronic medical records. In jockeying for some of that cash, vendor executives are making the rounds to convince business and general IT interests that the time has never been better to get involved in healthcare. "I'm optimistic. The money is coming. The national debate has been engaged. And now is the time where our industry may be...

Panel raps CMS for not requiring MD progress notes

Perhaps the biggest surprise in the proposed rules for meaningful use of health IT was the fact that physicians will not have to keep electronic progress notes to earn Medicare or Medicaid bonus payments in 2011. Now, some members of the Health IT Policy Committee, an HHS advisory panel, are second-guessing the plan. At last week's Policy Committee meeting in Washington, Dr. Paul Tang, who co-chairs the workgroup on meaningful use, and Dr. George Hripcsak, the workgroup's...

Committee wants to recast NHIN as set of policies

The Nationwide Health Information Network should be recast as a set of policies and standards to facilitate exchange of health data rather than a physical network connecting databases, a federal advisory committee says. The Health IT Policy Committee is pushing for the new definition and focus to help healthcare providers meet the short deadlines for achieving meaningful use of health IT. Instead of serving as a "medical Internet" of sorts--as former national health IT coordinator...

Record Changes

Health Data Management article on the history and evolution of medical records and interview with the CEO of the American Health Information Management Association. Read more on "Record changes"

Physicians, pharmacists slam e-prescribing technology, rules

CMS has paid a small bonus for electronic prescribing since the beginning of 2009, and e-prescribing will be a component of "meaningful use" of EMR when that incentive program gets underway in 2011. But the technology still has a number of shortcomings, several constituencies said this week. At a meeting of the federal Health IT Policy Committee this week, Virginia family practitioner Dr. Alex Krist noted that his practice has an EMR with e-prescribing that has allowed the doctors...

As Apple launches iPad, Microsoft pushes Windows tablets for EMRs

As Apple was releasing its much-anticipated iPad (Is it a tablet computer or just a glorified iPod Touch, anyway?) on Wednesday, Microsoft was preparing to fight back in the healthcare sphere. Writing at the Microsoft HealthBlog, Dr. Bill Crounse, senior director for worldwide health at the Redmond Empire, reminds readers that Windows-based tablets have been used in healthcare for years. Crounse interviews a California physician who has been using Microsoft Office OneNote on a tablet PC...

HITECH security breaches are about to cost more

While healthcare providers and their associates--which include third-party administrators, claims processors, attorneys, accountants and software providers--have been required since September 2009 to report breaches of 500 medical records or more if the records include non-encrypted data, some states have been enacting tougher laws. Now, it looks as though the federal government will be upping fines--in some cases up to $1.5 million--related to the leak of personal information, as...

Health IT Money Secured, But Program Faces Challenges

Washington has channeled billions of dollars to help hospitals and doctors adopt electronic medical records, but obstacles remain on the horizon. One possible challenge is that no entity has yet been named to "test and certify" the records, Modern Healthcare reports. Nonetheless, one group, The Certification Commission for Health Information Technology, will begin taking applications Feb. 12 from health IT vendors to do just that. The group fulfilled the certifying function for much of...

Physicians Can Receive Federal Incentives For Switching To Electronic Medical Records

From the Chicago Tribune: "Beginning next year, physicians will be eligible for extra payments from federal health insurance programs upon implementing an electronic medical record system. The enhanced reimbursements were made possible by the federal stimulus bill signed into law last year by President Barack Obama. In the meantime, private firms are beginning to offer incentives to help doctors finance their electronic health record systems, which can cost several thousand dollars even...

HHS: Rules for meaningful use, certification, HIPAA are on schedule

Don't expect a delay in the start of the federal EMR incentive program. In its semi-annual regulatory update, HHS lists the effective date as Oct. 1, 2010, for hospitals--the first day of federal fiscal year 2011--and Jan. 1, 2011, for physician practices, just as planned all along. The agency also says it is on schedule to publish regulations for several components of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act before the end of 2009, including the much-anticipated proposal for...

HHS Secretary Sebelius Announces Plans To Establish Health IT "Beacon Communities"

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and Dr. David Blumenthal, HHS' National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, announced today plans to make available $235 million to support an innovative Beacon Community Program. The program will work to accelerate and demonstrate the ability of health information technology to transform local health care systems, and improve the lives of Americans and the performance of the health care providers who serve them. The Beacon Community Program will...

National Quality Forum endorses measures for use of electronic data

The National Quality Forum released information on 70 measures they endorse to gather quality electronic healthcare. Read more on "NQF Endorses Measures to Incrementally Advance Use of Electronic Data for Quality Improvement"

Health Information Technology for the Future of Health and Care

The US government's Web portal for all things related to health information technology (HIT). ARRA of 2009 (Recovery Act) HITECH funding opportunities Privacy/Security National Health Information Network (NHIN) Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) Health IT Buzz Blog Read more...

CMS proposes definition of meaningful use of certified EHR technology

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announces a proposed rule to implement provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA or Recovery Act) that will provide incentive payments for the meaningful use of certified electronic healthcare record (EHR) technology.

Are Electronic Medical Records Helpful for Care Coordination? Experiences of Physician Practices.

Abstract of a study conducted by the Center for Studying Health System Change on physician practices using EMRs. Read more on "Are electronic medical records helpful for care coordination? Experiences of physician practices"

Chicken pox vaccine may also reduce risk of shingles among children

Researchers at Kaiser Permanente found something unusual when they looked at electronic health records of children vaccinated for chicken pox: Few of them had shingles. Read more on "Chicken pox vaccine may also reduce risk of shingles among children"

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009

We waited years for the federal government to do more than talk--and occasionally sponsor a pilot or demonstration program--about health IT. Annually from 2004 through 2008, various members of Congress would talk about how the country needs electronic health records and such, praise a new-found spirit of bipartisanship, then sponsor legislation authorizing maybe $125 million a year of federal money for health IT. Inevitably, the bills would die in committee. (What, you expected a...

Meaningful use to require 5 CDS rules but not progress notes in 2011

Healthcare providers will have to keep up-to-date problem lists, write electronic prescriptions, have electronic drug interaction checking, incorporate data from test results into their electronic health records, keep patient vitals and implement at least five rules for clinical decision support (CDS) to be eligible for federal Medicare or Medicaid bonus payments beginning in 2011, according to proposed federal rules for "meaningful use" of EHRs. A previous plan would have only required...

National E-Health Network Remains Industry Challenge

As doctors and hospitals begin to transition to electronic medical records, one industry obstacle remains: ensuring that patients' records can smoothly follow them from one provider to another, the Associated Press reports. Though new stimulus funding for electronic records requires records to be "interoperable," or shareable, "the debate over interoperability among health care providers, which has been going on for years, could take well beyond the 2014 timeframe to be solved, industry...

The push for "push" technology for the NHIN

At this link [link removed], an article titled "New technology a 'push' toward EHR future" discusses how "…push messaging, a likely first step in rolling out a proposed national health information network in time for healthcare organizations to use electronic health-record systems in a 'meaningful manner' and qualify for federal EHR subsidy payments under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009." The article discusses how: David Blumenthal,...

Physicians More Likely To Report Drug Safety Information Through Electronic Health Records System

Pfizer announced results of a survey the company recently sponsored that shows physicians are more likely to report side effects through an electronic health records (EHR) system, as compared to traditional paper methods. Nearly 60 percent of physicians who responded to the survey also agreed that adverse event reporting through an EHR system would improve patient care."Patient safety continues to be a top priority at Pfizer," said Freda Lewis-Hall, MD, Pfizer's chief medical...

Switching to EMR requires knowledge, flexibilty

Can being an 'early adopter' save your hospital millions of dollars? We both know the answer depends on what you're adopting. Suppose we are discussing the adoption of an idea. Can that be analogous to not adopting another idea? I think it can. Allow me to explain. Many providers are in the process of making a very expensive, highly complex, and wide-ranging decision regarding their healthcare information technology strategy (HIT) for their electronic healthcare records system...

Digital imaging could be a catalyst for HIE, PHR adoption

Mention health information exchange to Dr. Elliot Menschik and he'll immediately ask a question: "Where's the business model? That's been the Achilles' heel of HIEs." And it has. Whether you call them regional health information organizations (RHIOs), community health information networks (CHINs) or the current term of choice, HIEs, dozens if not hundreds have shut down after the seed money dried up, many without ever transmitting a single byte of clinical data. But Menschik,...

PHR report card is rather meaningless at this point

With much fanfare, the Patient Privacy Rights Foundation on Wednesday unveiled its first "report card" on the privacy protections built into personal health records. "Some PHRs only share your information with your explicit permission. Some allow you to segment 'or lock-up' extra sensitive information, so it can only be seen by those that you permit. Some offer easily accessible reports of who saw and used your information, when and why," the Austin, Texas-based organization said in a...

National Coordinator's Office Reorganizes

The Office of the National Coordinator has reorganized its components, or offices, within the ONC.The new organizational structure has six offices--the Immediate Office of the National Coordinator with five other offices directly reporting to National Coordinator David Blumenthal, M.D. The offices are:* Office of Economic Modeling and Analysis, * Office of the Chief Scientist,* Office of the Deputy National Coordinator for Programs & Policy,* Office...

HIT progress "stunningly slow" in 10 years since IOM report

Tuesday (December 1, 2009) marked the 10th anniversary of the publication of To Err Is Human, the eye-opening Institute of Medicine report with the now-familiar assertion that preventable medical errors in U.S. hospitals kill 44,000 to 98,000 people every year. The landmark tome, plus a follow-up report, Crossing the Quality Chasm (2001), and other subsequent IOM publications called for greater use of health information technology to help reduce the number of mistakes...

Poorly implemented EMRs

This may not come as shocking news to people in the business, but it's good to get it out there to the general public: Not all EMR implementations are created equal, and some actually can increase the risk of medical errors. "Our basic position is that the current products cannot meet our quality, safety or efficiency needs," University of New Mexico internist Dr. Kendall Rogers, chairman of an IT task force for the Society of Hospital Medicine, told a reporter for the Huffington...

HHS Announces Plans to Make $80 Million Available to Support Health IT Workforce

Dr. David Blumenthal, HHS' National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, today announced plans to make available $80 million in grants to help develop and strengthen the health information technology workforce. The grants that will be made available include $70 million for community college training programs and $10 million to develop educational materials to support these programs. Both programs will support the immediate need for skilled health information technology (health...

Supplier exec: Connectivity will unleash the power of health IT

Electronic medical records and computerized physician order entry won't help the nation meet the goals of the the federal stimulus legislation of patient-centered coordinated care, improved quality of care, reduced medical errors and less duplication. It will take connectivity between EMRs and other medical technologies, and it will require full, two-way interoperability, says a medication management executive. Writing in Hospitals & Health Networks, Jeff Pelletier,...

ONC letter provides long-term blueprint

With yesterday’s release of an open letter concerning the term “meaningful use”, ONC Coordinator Dr. David Blumenthal provided healthcare stakeholders with a partial status report on the federal push for greater use of electronic health records. A close reading of the letter may also provide some ideas for how policymakers can sustain the move toward, and assess the long-term impact of, the desired technological transformation. While the letter is designed to provide an...

Hospital tech teams prepare for stimulus funds

Hospitals across the country are poised to take advantage of the federal dollars from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act that will become available – perhaps sooner than an official meaning of "meaningful use." Some hospitals and healthcare systems are looking not only to help themselves, but also their associated physicians and the health information exchanges that can link them all together. "I don't see us going after the grant money directly," said William...

Out of the loop? CFOs, CEOs need to get on the ARRA bandwagon

Healthcare chief financial officers and chief executive officers seem to be out of the loop when it comes to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and it's high time that they get in on the action, according to Susan DeVore, president and CEO of Premier, a healthcare improvement alliance. "If CFOs and CEOs aren't involved, they need to be," she said. Some, however, are already looking at what should come next. "There is very significant funding for those who can...

National Survey Of US Hospitals Shows Information Technology Has Yielded Neither Administrative ....

The increased computerization in U.S. hospitals hasn't made them cheaper or more efficient, Harvard researchers say, although it may have modestly improved the quality of care for heart attacks. The findings, published in the online edition of the American Journal of Medicine, contradict claims by President Obama and many lawmakers that health information technology (health IT), including electronic medical records, will save billions and help make reform affordable....

CCHIT outlines certification criteria for meaningful use

The Certification Commission for Health IT said it plans to launch in October a certification program that includes criteria that will be required for providers to demonstrate meaningful use of their electronic health records by 2011. Healthcare providers must show that they are meaningful users of health IT to be eligible for increased Medicare and Medicaid payments provided under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. CCHIT said its plan will have options for...

Explaining International IT Application Leadership: Health IT

In this report, ITIF Senior Analyst Daniel Castro identifies which countries are leading in the deployment of health IT and highlights lessons that might be useful for other countries. The first section of the report gives an overview of the current state of and trends in health IT adoption in the United States and several other developed countries, particularly focusing on Denmark, Finland and Sweden. The second section of the report identifies the factors that have led to...

CMS encourages EHR use for Medicare quality reporting

Healthcare providers will have the option to use electronic health record systems to report Medicare quality and electronic prescribing measures to CMS in some of its pay-for-performance programs next year, according to an announcement by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The revisions are designed “to promote adoption and use of electronic health records and to provide both eligible professionals and CMS with experience on EHR-based reporting,” CMS said in the Oct....

ONC revisits linking consumer preferences to EHRs

Article about the inclusion of patient choices for advanced directives, including DNRs (do not resusitate orders) in interoperable EHRs. Read more on "ONC revisits linking consumer preferences to EHRs"

Chopra seeks outside advice on health IT standards

Article about Health IT Standard Committee's work on interoperatility of EHRs. Read more on "Chopra seeks outside advice on health IT standards"    

Is cost finally moving the needle for EHR adoption?

The biggest barrier to electronic health record (EHR) adoption has always been the upfront cost of implementing the system and the productivity lost during the learning curve. The rapidly changing healthcare landscape, however, may make cost the reason why physicians adopt health IT. Come again? The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently announced a 21.2 percent 2010 pay cut for physicians participating in Medicare. That much of a cut in...

eHealth Initiative's annual survey reports sharp increase in data exchange

WASHINGTON – The number of health information exchange initiatives that report being operational and exchanging data has increased nearly 40 percent since 2008, according to the eHealth Initiative's Sixth Annual Survey of Health Information Exchange. Read more on "eHealth Initiatives annual survey reports sharp increase in data exchange"  

Videos

Electronic Health Records 2.0: What Does the Future Hold?

This Expert voices panel focuses on Electronic Health Records 2.0, which aired on Federal News Radio (WFED) on February 28, 2012. Panelists include: Peter Basch, MD, FACP, Medical Director, Ambulatory EHR...

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