Briefing Detail Page
Health Information Technology and Its Future: More Than the Money
Friday, June 20, 2008
Health information technology (IT) wins many honorable mentions. It is viewed by respected analysts and presidential candidates in both parties as a tool with the potential to save lives, improve efficiency and increase the overall quality of our health care delivery system.
It is also touted as a possible way to cut health care costs. A recent report from the Congressional Budget Office, however, found that health IT alone is not sufficient to reduce costs by much.
This briefing considered the idea that adoption of health information technology is about much more than saving money. For instance, it has been known for more than a decade that medication errors which cost lives or increase morbidity can be reduced through the use of computerized prescribing of orders and drugs. Yet, as of 2006, only about 12 percent of physicians and 11 percent of hospitals had adopted such tools.
And little change was noted in a soon-to-be-released Harvard study. Typical medical records are still kept in paper files, leading to fragmentation of information and lack of timely communication among physicians, hospitals, labs and pharmacies for any given patient.
What lessons about quality improvement can be learned from physicians, hospitals and integrated delivery systems that are using electronic medical records? What are the barriers to adoption and existing market disincentives? What role does the federal government play in promoting the adoption of health IT systems? What role should it play? Will Medicare lead the way?
To address these and related questions, the Alliance for Health Reform and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation sposored a June 20 briefing. Speakers were: Peter Orszag, Congressional Budget Office; Sara Rosenbaum, George Washington University; and Janet Wright, American College of Cardiology. Ed Howard of the Alliance and John Lumpkin of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation co-moderated.
Ed Howard, Alliance for Health Reform, Moderator
John Lumpkin, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Moderator
Sara Rosenbaum - 1, George Washington University, Speaker
Peter Orszag, Congressional Budget Office, Speaker
Sara Rosenbaum - 2, George Washington University, Speaker
Janet Wright, American College of Cardiology, Speaker
(Click on the camera icon to see a video of the speaker's presentation.)
|Transcript, Event Summary and/or Webcast and Podcast|
Transcript: Health Information Technology and Its Future: More Than the Money (Adobe Acrobat PDF), 6/20/2008
Event Summary: Health Information Technology and Its Future: More Than the Money (Word Document), 6/20/2008
Full Webcast/Podcast: Health Information Technology and Its Future: More Than the Money
|The transcript, full webcast and podcast for this briefing, as well as videos of individual speakers' presentations, are provided by Kaiser Family Foundation.
Peter Orszag Presentation (PowerPoint), 6/20/2008
Sara Rosenbaum Overview Presentation (PowerPoint), 6/20/2008
Sara Rosenbaum Presentation (PowerPoint), 6/20/2008
Janet Wright Presentation (PowerPoint), 6/20/2008
(If you want to download one or more slides from these presentations, contact us at info@allhealth or click here for instructions.)
American College of Cardiology’s Letter to Baucus-Grassley (Adobe Acrobat PDF), American College of Cardiology, 5/19/2008
Letter to Baucus (Adobe Acrobat PDF), Various Drugstore Chains, 5/22/2008
Medication Errors Injure 1.5 Million People and Costs Billions of Dollars Annually (Adobe Acrobat PDF), Institute of Medicine, 7/20/2008
Health Information Technology and Its Future: More Than the Money (Word Document), Word Document, 6/20/2008
Sourcelist (Word Document), , 6/20/2008
|Offsite Materials (briefing documents saved on other websites)|
American College of Cardiology Supports E-Prescription Mandate, iHealth Beat, 6/3/2008
Americans Want Next President to Prioritize Health IT Efforts, iHealth Beat, 6/13/2008
Bush Plan Offers Bonuses to Medicare Doctors Who Use Electronic Records, Congressional Quarterly, 6/10/2008
CBO Questions Savings from Digital Health Care Records, Wall Street Journal, 5/22/2008
Commentary: Information Tech for Health Care, Washington Times, 5/27/2008
Continued Progress: Hospital Use of Information Technology (Adobe Acrobat PDF),AHA, 2/27/2007
Defining Key Health Information Technology Terms (Adobe Acrobat PDF),The National Alliance for Health Information Technology, 4/28/2008
Electronic Documentation Calls for Standardized Nursing Language, NurseZone.com, 5/1/2008
Electronic Prescribing: Becoming a Mainstream Practice (Adobe Acrobat PDF),eHealth Initiative and Center for improving Medication Management, 6/10/2008
E-prescribing Campaign Aims at Patients to Reach Doctors, American Medical News, 6/2/2008
Evidence on the Costs and Benefits of Health Information Technology (Adobe Acrobat PDF),Congressional Budget Office, 5/20/2008
Federal Health IT Office Unveils Five-Year Strategic Plan, iHealth Beat, 6/4/2008
Google Heads to Hospital, Technology Review, 5/28/2008
Health Information Technology: Can HIT Lower Costs and Improve Quality? (Adobe Acrobat PDF),The RAND Corporation, 1/1/2005
HHS Promulgates New Regulations to Facilitate Adoption of Health Information Technology, Empower Med, 5/15/2008
HHS Selects 12 Communities for Medicare HER Incentive Project, iHealth Beat, 6/11/2008
Kaiser Backs Microsoft Patient-Data Plan, New York Times, 6/10/2008
Key Themes and Hightlights from the NHQR, AHRQ, 3/27/2008
Memorandum from Committee on Energy and Commerce to Members of the Subcommitte on Health: Discu (Adobe Acrobat PDF),Committee on Energy and Commerce - Subcommittee on Health, 5/22/2008
Minnesota Mandates E-Prescribing, Health Data Management, 6/3/2008
ONC-Coordinated Federal Health IT Strategic Plan: 2008-2012 (Adobe Acrobat PDF),Office of the National Coordinator, 6/3/2008
Part D Standards Aim to Encourage e-Prescribing, American Medical News, 4/28/2008
Performance Measures Using Electronic Health Records: Five Case Studies, The Commonwealth Fund, 5/12/2008
Peter Orszag's Blog Response: The RAND health IT study redux, Congressional Budget Office, 6/5/2008
Sara Rosenbaum of The George Washington University discusses a recent study showing that eight out of 10 ambulatory care physicians don't have a functional electronic health records systems in place. (11 min.) From the June 20 briefing cosponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
Peter Orszag, director of the Congressional Budget Office, discusses several reasons for adopting health information technology, but points out that health IT is not sufficient alone to generate savings. (13 min.) From the June 20 briefing cosponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
Janet Wright of the American College of Cardiology discusses how cardiologists use health information technology in their practices. (10 min.) From the June 20 briefing cosponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
John Lumpkin of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation discussed the promise and limitations of health information technology. (5 min.) From the June 20 briefing cosponsored by the foundation.
Toolkit on Connection Between Health and Housing
A new Alliance toolkit, “The Connection between Health and Housing: The Evidence and Policy Landscape,” provides a detailed look into federal, state and local initiatives, as well as cost implications for health and housing programs.
Attempts to tie health and housing policy are gaining momentum, amid evidence that housing, a social determinant of health, is an important factor in the health status of various populations. More than 610,000 people experience homelessness in the U.S., and over 250,000 individuals within that population have a severe mental illness or a chronic substance use disorder, according to the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Toolkit on Biosimilars
The Alliance for Health Reform has released a new toolkit, “Biosimilars: Unpacking Complex Issues.”
The Affordable Care Act created an expedited licensure pathway for biosimilars, and, in March 2015, the U.S. approved the first biosimilar, leaving policy makers, regulators, providers and stakeholders to grapple with regulatory and financial questions.
Biosimilars are similar – but not identical – to biologic drugs, and cost less. Unlike traditional pharmaceuticals, biologic drugs are derived from living organisms and tissues, making them more complex and expensive to produce.