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eHealth Initiative Survey Links Health IT to Lower Costs and Improved Outcomes
Date:9/11/2008

Growing number of providers also report a positive financial return on investment

WASHINGTON, Sept. 11 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The exchange of health information electronically between physicians, hospitals, health plans, and patients is decreasing the cost of care and improving outcomes, according to a new survey released by the non-profit eHealth Initiative today. The 2008 Fifth Annual Survey of Health Information Exchange at the State and Local Levels, which included responses from 130 community-based initiatives in 48 states, shows the significant impact fully operational initiatives are having on improving health care delivery and efficiency.

The key findings from the 2008 survey are as follows:

-- A majority (69%) of the fully operational exchange efforts (29/42) report reductions in health care costs. These respondents say health information exchange allows them to:

- Decrease dollars spent on redundant tests

- Reduce the number of patient admissions to hospitals for medication errors, allergies or interactions

- Decrease the cost of care for chronically ill patients

- Reduce staff time spent on administration

-- About half (52%) of fully operational exchange efforts (22/42) report positive impacts on health care delivery, including:

- A decrease in prescribing errors

- Improved access to test results

- Improved compliance with chronic care and prevention guidelines

- Better care outcomes for patients

- Increased recognition of disease outbreaks

- Improved quality of practice life

- Reductions in malpractice insurance costs

-- In addition to improving care delivery, tackling population health challenges continues to be a goal of many operational health information exchange efforts with ten offering disease or chronic care management services, eight offering quality improvement reporting for clinicians, six offering public health reporting,
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SOURCE eHealth Initiative
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