The percentage of US hospitals using health information technology such as Electronic Health Records has more than doubled in the last two years, according to an announcement by the Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

There has been major progress in use of health information technology (health IT) by doctors and hospitals, and that new data shows nearly 2,000 hospitals and more than 41,000 doctors have now received over $3 billion in incentive payments to use health IT in a meaningful way, particularly Electronic Health Records (EHRs).

New figures from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) show that physicians, hospitals, and other health care providers have received $3.12 billion in incentive payments to use EHRs to improve quality of patient care. In just one month, in January, CMS handed out $519 million to eligible providers. Incentive payments to encourage use of EHRs in meaningful ways can be up to $44,000 under the Medicare EHR Incentive Program and up to $63,750 under the Medicaid EHR Incentive Program.
This trend parallels an anticipated fast growth in the labour market for health IT jobs throughout the US.

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