New York City Rolls Out Plan for Electronic Records
New York City officials today will announce a $19.8 million contract with eClinicalWorks for electronic health records software systems, which will be given to city health care providers who treat low-income residents, the Boston Globe reports.
The purchase is part of a plan introduced by Mayor Michael Bloomberg (R) to improve information systems used for Medicaid beneficiaries, prisoners and other outpatient populations, including patients treated at community health centers (Rowland, Boston Globe, 4/16).
Farzad Mostashari, an assistant city health commissioner who is overseeing the project, said, "We will cover half of all the high-volume Medicaid providers in the city, those where over 30% of their patient encounters are Medicaid or the uninsured." He said the software will be distributed to about 1,500 medical practices in the city.
The practices will have to supply the computers, although some that lack the equipment might qualify for state grants to fund their purchases.
Mostashari noted that many physicians' offices already have systems for billing and scheduling, but most are not specifically designed for patient care. The software the city is developing would combine all of those functions, Mostashari said.
The system will boost medical data sharing and will alert physicians when patients are due for preventive care. The city's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene has plans to compile the information collected in the systems to evaluate the performance of each practice (Pérez-Peña, New York Times, 4/6).
Massachusetts-based eClinicalWorks will open an office in Manhattan to manage the initiative (Boston Globe, 4/16).