Description

Electronic Health Records (EHRs) began to be introduced in the 1960s. Government-run hospitals were the primary adopters of technology. The rate of adoption continually rose from there, doubling from 2007

Electronic Health Records (EHRs) began to be introduced in the 1960s. Government-run hospitals were the primary adopters of technology. The rate of adoption continually rose from there, doubling from 2007 to 2012 from 34.8% to about 71%. Most of the growth seen from 2007 to 2012 is a result of the passage of the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act as part of the American Reinvestment and Recovery (ARRA) Act. $19 billion dollars were made available as part of these two acts to increase the rate of Health Information Technology (HIT), of which EHRs are a large part. A national health information network is envisioned for the end stages of HITECH which will enable health information to be exchanged immediately from one health network to another. While the ability to exchange data quickly appears to be an achievable goal, it might come with the cost of loss of usability and functionality for providers who interact with the EHRs and often enter health data into an EHR. The loss of usability can be attributed to how the EHR was designed.

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