Articles, PSQH July 6, 2015

Square Peg – Round Hole Problem

by Barry P Chaiken, MD

Last summer the physician Congressman Phil Gingrey (GA) held hearings to highlight the unacceptable lack of interoperability among electronic medical record systems. Gingrey said:

“Congress has spent, as we all know, something like $24 billion over the past six years buying products to facilitate interoperability, only to have…closed platforms. Do you believe the federal government and the taxpayers are getting their money’s worth subsidizing products that are supposed to be interoperable, but they’re not?” (Gregg, 2014)

Further in his remarks he referenced a RAND report that cites a lack of interoperability as one reason why EHRs have not yet reached their full potential. He went on to say, “If the June 2014 RAND report is true, we have been subsidizing systems that block information instead of allowing for information transfers, which was never the intent of [the HITECH Act]. … It may be time this committee takes a closer look at the practices of vendor companies in this space, given the possibility that fraud may be perpetrated on the American taxpayer.”

Excerpts from: Ending Healthcare’s Square Peg – Round Hole Problem. Becker’s Health IT & CIO Review, July 6, 2015

 

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