Under the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act of 2009, healthcare providers are now offered incentives to use electronic health records (EHRs).
A recent analysis from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that by 2011, 55 percent of physicians reported they had adopted EHRs, indicating that EHR adoption is finally on the rise. Moreover, three in four adopters said their system met the Act’s criteria for meaningful use.
Healthcare providers deserve recognition for adopting EHR systems. Their journey to date has not been easy, with challenges ranging from unexpected expenses to the logistics of incorporating technology smoothly into their interactions with patients.
Adoption of an EHR in and of itself does not improve care. Having electronic access to data is just the first step. Quality is only improved when providers interpret data to connect the dots between diagnoses and treatment options.