California Health IT Efforts Draw Praise From Acting Medicare Chief
At an event in Mountain View, acting CMS Administrator Kerry Weems said California's leadership in health care IT should be replicated nationwide but noted that quality of care should not be jeopardized for rapid adoption, Modern Healthcare reports.
"We're here to learn from your experience and not repeat your mistakes," Weems said. The acting CMS administrator met with members of what he called the "California brain trust of health care IT," including:
- David Brailer, founder of Health Evolution Partners;
- Molly Coye, founder and CEO of the Health Technology Center;
- Don Holmquest, president and CEO of CalRHIO;
- David Hopkins, director of quality measurement and improvement for the Pacific Business Group on Health;
- Jo Ellen Ross, president and CEO of Lumetra, a not-for-profit quality improvement group; and
- Mark Smith, president and CEO of the California HealthCare Foundation.
About 37% of California physicians use electronic health records, compared with 28% nationally, according to a CHCF report to be released next week. However, most of the doctors in California who use EHRs work in large practices or integrated health systems such as Kaiser Permanente.
Twenty-five percent of physicians in small practices in California use EHRs, while 13% in solo practices and 3% practicing in community clinics have adopted EHRs, Smith said, adding, "We may be leaders, but it is hardly time to celebrate."
Coye noted the danger of disparities in health care IT. "We need to start generating funds to help support small practices and clinics," she said, adding, "None of the financing schemes proposed so far can support the small and solo practices" (Vesely, Modern Healthcare, 1/9).
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