Meaningful Use Of EHRs Among Hospitals Ineligible For Incentives Lags Behind That Of Other Hospitals 200913
Author: Daniel Walker, Arthur Mora, Mollye M. Demosthenidy, Nir Menachemi, Mark L. Diana
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ meaningful-use incentive program aims to promote the adoption and use of electronic health records (EHRs) throughout health care settings in the United States. However, psychiatric, long-term care, and rehabilitation hospitals are ineligible for these incentive payments. Using national data from the period 2009–13, we compared eligible and ineligible hospitals’ rates of EHR adoption. All three types of ineligible hospitals had significantly lower rates of adoption than eligible hospitals did, yet both groups experienced similar growth rates. This growth has widened the gap in adoption of health information technology between eligible and ineligible hospitals, which could stymie efforts to lower costs and improve quality across the health care continuum. Future policies might target ineligible hospitals specifically, as the lag in EHR adoption among this group of providers might undermine the achievement of more coordinated and collaborative health care.