ONC: Health IT Fact Sheet

From the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology

What Is Health IT?

The term “health information technology” (health IT) refers to the electronic systems health care professionals – and increasingly, patients – use to store, share, and analyze health information. Health IT includes:

  • ▪  Electronic health records (EHRs). EHRs allow doctors to better keep track of your health information and may enable them to see it when you have a problem even if their office is closed. EHRs also make it easier for your doctor to share information with specialists, so that specialists who need your information have it available when it’s needed.
  • ▪  Personal health records (PHRs). A PHR is a lot like an EHR, except that you control what kind of information goes into it. You can use a PHR to keep track of information from your doctor visits, but the PHR can also reflect your life outside the doctor’s office and your health priorities, such as tracking what you eat, how much you exercise, and your blood pressure. Sometimes, your PHR can link with your doctor’s EHR.
  • ▪  Electronic prescribing (E-prescribing). A paper prescription can get lost or misread. E-prescribing allows your doctor to communicate directly with your pharmacy. This means you can go to the pharmacy to pick up medicine without having to bring the paper prescription.
  • ▪  Privacy and security. All of these electronic systems can increase the protections of your health information. For example, electronic information can be encrypted so that only authorized people can read it. Health IT can also make it easier to record and track who has accessed your information.

    For more information click HERE

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Survey: Community Hospitals Push Ahead with IT Despite Tight Budgets

By Mike Millard, Healthcare IT News

DALLAS – A new survey from Anthelio finds that a majority of community hospitals report having low operating margins due to rising healthcare costs and lower Medicare/Medicaid reimbursement. Nonetheless, most hospitals surveyed are still working to put in place an array of health IT.

The report finds community hospitals targeting several priorities as they work to put in place technology solutions to improve operations, and improve patient satisfaction and performance:

  • EMR implementation. Sixty-nine percent of community hospitals have acquired and started their EMR implementations, with 39 percent spending more than $8 million on their EMR implementations.
  • ICD-10 conversion. Although 95 percent of community hospitals have begun the switch from ICD-9/HIPAA 4010 to ICD-10/HIPAA 5010, only 24 percent are currently undergoing remediation.
  • Health information exchanges. Responding community hospitals expressed a strong interest in participating in HIEs, with 43 percent saying that they are participating in an HIE, plus another 28 percent saying they are not participating, but would like to – 29 percent reported not being interested in HIE participation.
For more Information click HERE


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Community Hospitals Adopting IT Faster Than Ever

By Bernie Monegain, Healthcare IT News

OREM, UT – The community hospital that still relies exclusively on a paper medical record is rapidly moving toward extinction, according to a new report from research firm, as meaningful use drives a jump in the adoption of electronic health records.

Larger hospitals and IDNs have led the adoption of EMR technologies over the past several years, but many vendors now see the community space as providing an opportunity for market share growth.

he KLAS Community Hospital CMS 2011: Rapid Adoption found that community hospitals – now motivated by meaningful use and the associated financial incentives – have awakened to the reality that clinical information technology is not only within their reach but may be fundamental to their sustainability. Where clinicians previously may have had exposure only to order entry and results, today the physician/clinician workflow is becoming increasingly dependent on technology.

For More Information click HERE

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ONC Summit: Consumers Want Providers to Speed EHR Deployment

By Diana Manos, Healthcare IT News

WASHINGTON – Electronic health records will become the norm, sooner than later, experts said at a summit hosted Friday by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC).

The bottom line, said many of the speakers at ONC’s Grantee and Stakeholder Summit, is that consumers are demanding EHRs. The government is helping with adoption, but this is not nearly as influential as the healthcare consumer’s pressure on providers.

National Coordinator for Health IT Farzad Mostashari, MD, said the patient is not just “a ticket holder crammed into economy.”

“The patient is the copilot” with his or her healthcare provider, Mostashari said. “Increasingly, we’ll hear patients, consumers, people expecting more out of their interactions with others. So we’re going to see all of the pieces come together for this.”

For more Information click HERE

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IT Industry Study: 50% of Physicians Use Medical Apps

Chris Gullo, Mobi Health News

More than 50 percent of physicians use a smartphone for work purposes, according to a new study by IT industry association CompTIA. CompTIA’s “Third Annual Healthcare IT Insights and Opportunities” study consisted of online surveys of 350 doctors, dentists and other healthcare providers or administrators, along with executives at 400 IT firms that work in healthcare IT. The association conducted the surveys over the summer.

 For Survey Results click HERE
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Survey Examines Roles of Chief Nursing Officers in IT Decisions


Identifying the changing roles and responsibilities of chief nursing officers and chief medical informatics officers, HIMSS Analytics announced the results of a research report that examined topics such as the roles of CNOs and CMIOs within a healthcare organization and their influence on IT decisions.

The report, “Medical Device Integration: CMIO and CNO Perspectives,” sponsored by Capsule, a leading provider of medical device connectivity, gathered the opinions of CMIOs, CNOs and senior nursing executives.

The study found that senior nurse executives will continue to have involvement in the lifecycle of IT in any future decisions such as medical device integration, but will need to find a balance with their many non-technology-driven responsibilities.

“Nurses are an integral part of successfully achieving improved outcomes, optimal wellness and overall population health management,” said Joyce Sensmeier, RNBC, MS, CPHIMS, FHIMSS, FAAN, vice president of informatics for HIMSS. “Because of the breadth and depth of nursing engagement in all aspects of healthcare, nurse leaders are in a key position to influence advances in technology and the multidimensional needs across all care settings.”

For more information, click HERE

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Data Shows Uninsured Patients Have Shorter Hospital Stays

By Amy Norton, Reuters Health

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) — Uninsured Americans tend to be discharged from the hospital somewhat sooner than those with health coverage, regardless of the medical condition itself, a new study finds.

Researchers are not sure what the reasons for the findings are. And it’s not clear that a shorter hospital stay is a bad thing.

Still, the findings suggest that financial factors are playing a role in hospital length of stay, the authors say.

Looking at records for nearly 850,000 adults discharged from U.S. hospitals between 2003 and 2007, the researchers found that uninsured patients had a slightly shorter stay than patients with private insurance or Medicaid — the government-funded health program for the poor.

When it came to potentially preventable hospitalizations — for worsening of chronic health problems like asthma or diabetes, for example — uninsured patients stayed in the hospital just under 2.8 days, on average.

 For more click HERE
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