Let’s face it, technology isn’t going away. In fact, it is growing at exponential rates that are tough to comprehend. The human race has grown substantially as a result of health related technologies and we are living longer than ever before because of the growth in medicine and all associated advancements in medical technology.
As Baby Boomers march closer to retirement, they are still apprehensive when it comes to technology. Their children are typically innovators on the tech curve. Boomers are willing to grasp this new world, but prefer to remain unchanged. With our health organizations adapting to the quickly evolving world, the boomers are finding it increasingly difficult to give up the pen and paper and adopt the future, a mouse and keyboard.
As per the CMS, The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, signed into law on February 17, 2009, as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009, provides incentives to professionals and hospitals to implement costly hi-tech systems. But to qualify to receive these incentives, professionals and hospitals are required to show they are putting these systems to €˜meaningful use.’€
The federal government is willing to commit endless resources to adopting HITECH and the use of EHRs (Electronic Health Records). For said organizations, they will incentivize payments in sums that exceed $27 billion over 10 years, or as much as $44,000 (through Medicare) and $63,750 (through Medicaid) per clinician. This funding will be the impetus needed to launch a full scale, nationwide campaign.
Adoption alone isn’t the goal of HITECH, rather meaningful use€ of EHRs is. Significant improvements in care by providers must be achieved. As with anything else in business, compensation is directly related to the achievement of advancement in healthcare processes and outcomes. According to the CMS, Core objectives comprise basic functions that enable EHRs to support improved health care. As a start, these include the tasks essential to creating any medical record, including the entry of basic data: patients’ vital signs and demographics, active medications and allergies, up-to-date problem lists of current and active diagnoses, and smoking status.€
So it begs the question, How do you help millions of baby boomers transition to HITECH, which is clearly the future, but is met with nothing but apprehension and aberration?€
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