Health Information Technology Initiative

December, 2011
IDA document: D-4529
FFRDC: Systems and Analyses Center
Division: Information Technology and Systems Division
Alfred E. Brenner, Karen D. Gordon See more authors
Health care lags behind other industries in adopting information technology by as much as 10–15 years. The administration has identified the development of a robust health information technology (HIT) infrastructure as one of the key approaches for improving the quality and reducing the costs of healthcare. The current study was initiated to better understand what was the current state of HIT, the medical communities’ attitudes regarding this matter, and what actions the administration had taken towards moving forward their ideas in fixing the problem. Early on in the study it became apparent that there were in place a good number of well funded programs that were finally making notable progress in instantiating an electronic health records (EHR) based health care system. This is only a start and success in this matter will depend upon the continuation and funding of these recent initiatives. This report summarizes these matters and concludes that with sustainment of the effort for at least another decade there is good expectation of a successful improvement, along with reduced costs, of patient care in the country.