Press Releases

61% OF OHIO PHYSICIANS GO ELECTRONIC
29-May-2013

FEDERAL INITIATIVE TO PROMOTE ELECTRONIC PATIENT RECORDS SHOWS SUCCESS

Columbus, OH - The U.S. healthcare system is experiencing a technological transformation, and so is Ohio.

Nationally, more than 50 percent of doctors and 80 percent of hospitals have switched from paper to electronic patient health records over the past several years, according to a recent federal announcement from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
In Ohio, 61 percent of physicians and 94 percent of hospitals have gone electronic – either by purchasing, installing or upgrading to a certified electronic health record (EHR) system – and the numbers continue to rise each month.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services(CMS) reported last week that 291,325 doctors and other eligible providers (55%) have received $5.9 billion in electronic health record incentive payments from Medicare and Medicaid. Some 3,880 hospitals have received $8.7 billion.

Ohio Health Information Partnership, which is the state-designated entity that has assisted more than 6,000 physicians in the adoption of electronic health records over the past two years, has worked alongside Cincinnati-based HealthBridge, Ohio Medicaid, the Ohio Department of Health and workforce development programs to accelerate the adoption of electronic health records and the achievement of meaningful use.

As of April 2013, calculations show that 16,508 payments have been to Ohio providers, totaling $607 million from CMS. The collaborative surpassed a 2012 goal established with the ONC to assist 10,000 providers in reaching federal “meaningful use” requirements.

Meaningful use is a way to report health data that shows how medical professionals are measuring and tracking the care they give to patients, especially through the use of electronic communications and exchange. The collaborative work can be found in a federal and state white paper entitled Putting the Pieces Together: How Ohio Is Leveraging Health IT for Better Health, Better Care, and Lower Costs.

Ohio’s Adoption and Meaningful Use of Electronic Health Records
Medicare and Medicaid Payments Combined
16,508 provider payments Total number of CMS payments made to doctors, clinicians and hospitals
$607 million Total amount of incentive payments from CMS to Ohio providers
Medicare Only
11,085 provider payments The number of Medicare payments made to doctors, clinicians and hospitals
$389.6 million Amount of Medicare incentive payments from CMS to Ohio providers
Medicaid Only
5,423 provider payments The number of Medicaid payments made to doctors, clinicians and hospitals
$217.2 million Amount of Medicaid incentive payments from CMS to Ohio providers through Ohio Medicaid
Hospitals Only
288 payments to 144 hospitals CMS made 288 payments to Ohio hospitals for Medicare, Medicaid or both. 144 hospitals out of 152 eligible hospitals received payments, which is 94 percent.
$315.6 million Amount of payments made to 144 Ohio hospitals for Medicare, Medicaid or both.
Physicians Only
16,206 payments made to physicians 15,185 physicians received payments (61%) Number of payments made to physicians (some could have received a second year payment.) There are approximately 25,000 physicians in Ohio. 61 percent or 15,185 received payments.
$291.4 million The amount of money physicians and clinicians received from CMS.

The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act andAmerican Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) promoted the use of electronic communications and medical records across the nation, and in 2011, primary care physicians received assistance from regional extension centers to prepare for and select electronic health record systems in Ohio.

The Partnership has seven regional partners who have worked with primary care physicians at no charge – especially those in rural, Appalachian and urban centers – to implement electronic health records and to help practices reach meaningful use requirements, allowing them to receive incentive money from CMS.

In 2015, physicians and hospitals who work with Medicare and Medicaid patients will have the payments they receive for patient care reduced if they do not use electronic health records.

The Ohio Health Information Partnership also manages CliniSync – the statewide health information exchange that allows physicians to receive reports and test results directly from hospitals. To date, 89 hospitals have contracted with CliniSync and 37 are live. This infrastructure also has been federally funded through ONC and HHS.

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For an interview or further questions, please contact Dottie Howe atdhowe@ohiponline.org or call 614-664-2605.