Interesting Fact: Per person, the US spends more than any other country on health care. Yet, the United States has been ranked 50th in the world for average life expectancy.
Experts believe a key to lowering costs and increasing life expectancy is the use of EHR/EMR technology to store medical records electronically. 28% of health facilities use this system, but generous incentives ($66,000 for doctor’s and more for hospitals) are expected to increase usage. Want to learn more? Here are some other fascinating facts about EHR in the USA:
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In 2007 alone, this country spent more than $2.24 trillion dollars on health care. In an effort to reduce costs and increase efficiency, the government is encouraging medical professionals to implement an EHR/EMR process.
The government claims this can reduce this expense by $80 billion each year. To make this happen, they pumped $20 billion of stimulus money into EHR/EMR technology in 2009.
The EHR is created as doctors, hospitals, and laboratories share information to create a central repository of medical data for a single patient—much like the financial industry has pooled their files to create centralized credit reports. EHR/EMR is stirring controversy: naysayers are concerned about privacy issues and the cost; proponents are saying it will revolutionize health care by saving lives and money. Take a closer look at this issue and decide for yourself!
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Billions of dollars have been set aside for the migration of medical records to digital form, and the big software vendors are scrambling to collect their piece of the pie.
Under the stimulus act enacted by the government in February, hospitals can apply for several million dollars to implement tech programs over the next five years, and individual physicians can get up to $44,000. If powerful monetary incentives are not enough, the payment is offset by a penalty for medical businesses that fail to comply by 2015; they will receive a cut in Medicare reimbursement. It’s easy to imagine scenarios where electronic record keeping would prevent mistakes and provide convenience. [click to continue…]