The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) released a survey data in their recently held Annual Meet, which says that almost all hospitals in the United States have adopted certified EHR systems. This is estimated to be around nine times the data released by the American Hospital Association (AHA) Information Technology Supplement in 2008. The survey also highlighted a rise in data sharing among healthcare units, with around 85% of hospitals exchanging key medical data via EHR systems.
The agency said that the use of certified EHR systems has improved from around 72% to around 96% in the past four years. Moreover, the adoption rate in small-scale, rural, as well as individual healthcare units has also improved significantly. ONC is also planning to assemble major stakeholders all around the country this month, and discuss the future prospects of “seamless and secure flow of health information for a number of national priorities.” The discussion would also focus on improving health and facilities science and research.
Themed “Better Health through IT,” the meet will focus on three core commitments: improving patient access to their health data, fighting data blocking, and implementing federally and nationally recognized standards in the health IT sector. Karen DeSalvo, M.D., M.P.H., M.Sc., National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, is believed to have a conversation with the former U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary, Kathleen Sebelius on the first day of the meet.
“As we kick off the 2016 ONC Annual Meeting today, these data showing nearly universal adoption of certified electronic health records by U.S. hospitals are an indication of how far we have come for clinicians and individuals since the HITECH Act was passed,” said DeSalvo. “I look forward to these next three days with leaders from across the country to discuss our collective work to ensure health information can flow where and when it is needed for national priorities like delivery system reform, the Precision Medicine Initiative, the Cancer Moonshot, and the opioid crisis.”