It’s always good to know who’s behind a study that you’re reading. In this case, it is a study by ONC and they are putting National Coordinator for Health Information Technology Farzad Mostashari’s name on it along with ONC researchers. In one respect, we know that ONC has a bias towards use of health IT. On the other hand they are also the organization with the most information on what’s happening with EHR and exchange of healthcare data. So, take those biases and check out some of the highlights of the study:
· 58 percent of hospitals exchanged data with providers outside their organization in 2012 and hospitals’ exchanges with other hospitals outside their organization more than doubled during the study period.
· Hospitals with basic EHR systems and participating in HIOs (health information organizations) had the highest rates of hospital exchange activity in 2012, regardless of the organizational affiliation of the provider exchanging data or the type of clinical information exchanged.
· The proportion of hospitals that adopted at least a basic EHR and participated in an HIO grew more than fivefold from 2008 to 2012.
· Between 2008 and2012, there were significant increases in the percent of hospitals exchanging radiology reports, laboratory results, clinical care summaries, and medication lists with hospitals and providers outside of their organization.
· 84 percent of hospitals that adopted an EHR and participated in a regional HIO exchanged information with providers outside their organization.
To see state-level estimates for several of the measures included in the new study, visit ONC’s Health IT Adoption and Use dashboard at http://dashboard.healthit.gov/. The abstract of the Health Affairs study can be found at http://content.healthaffairs.org/content/32/8/1346.abstract.