Editorial Praises Health Care IT Efforts of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich
The health care cause being promoted by the political "odd couple" of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) is "actually a very good one -- the need to drag the health care industry out of the dark ages of scribbled notes and into the modern world of electronic record-keeping," a New York Times editorial states (New York Times, 5/16).
Rodham Clinton and Gingrich on Wednesday announced that they will work together to promote legislation to spur the adoption of electronic record-keeping applications by the health care industry. Rodham Clinton and Gingrich appeared at a news conference in support of a bill (HR 2234) introduced in the House by Reps. Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I.) and Tim Murphy (R-Pa.) that would provide doctors and hospitals with incentives to adopt health information technology networks (California Healthline, 5/12).
According to the editorial, implementing electronic records that can be viewed by physicians, patients and health insurers "not only will make the health care system more efficient, but also should reduce medical errors caused by sloppy records or failure to communicate effectively." The editorial notes that Rodham Clinton and Gingrich have a "genuine and longstanding interest in health care reform," adding that perhaps they could "go on to tackle much tougher issues," such as restructuring government health care programs or covering more of the uninsured without "bankrupting the federal government."
The editorial concludes, "If they can agree on bipartisan solutions there, it really would be the beginning of a beautiful -- if peculiar -- political relationship" (New York Times, 5/16).