Health Policy

Initiative to promote electronic health records in the USA

With the aim to bring information technology to the practice of medicine, state governments of the United States are beginning to play a critical role in driving new systems into hospitals and doctors’ offices. Governors and legislators are on board to promote variety of strategies to encourage the use of electronic health records and other innovations. The primary effort targets to encourage the use of electronic health records, so that doctors statewide can have access to patient records. State officials have begun convening task forces of hospitals, doctors, insurers and other groups. These groups will develop plans for such regional systems. Many states have already been prompted to action by the federal government’s call to arms in 2004 to develop electronic patient records throughout the United States. Federal officials are developing national standards for the technology. Most of the states are still trying to develop a plan for a technology system. According to the health experts, many of these efforts have a long way to go toward meeting the federal government’s goal of having interoperable electronic health records by 2014.


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