Medical practitioners, patients and employers recommend immediate adoption of interoperable health information technology
WASHINGTON, Sept. 17 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Health IT Now! Coalition, co-chaired by former Sen. John Breaux and former Rep. Nancy Johnson, held a Capitol Hill briefing today to promote legislation that would provide clear interoperable standards for the rapid deployment of health information technology. Patient advocates, medical advocacy groups, practitioners, and employers agree that health IT is a pressing issue and that Congress needs to pass legislation this session.
Presenters at the event included Dr. Mohammad N. Akhter, executive director of the National Medical Association; Andrew Sperling, director of federal legislative advocacy at the National Alliance on Mental Illness; Jennifer Queen, a patient advocate, and Neil Trautwein, vice president of employee benefits policy counsel at the National Retail Federation.
"It's time for Congress to act so that our health care system can begin to deliver to patients the many, many benefits we are currently missing," said former Sen. Breaux. "Industries have benefited from the widespread adoption of information technology. Health IT involves no more than implementing the kind of electronic information systems already used in many business sectors and putting it to work in health care."
Health IT legislation will save lives and will make healthcare more affordable. Integrating decision support technology will help doctors identify inappropriate and unnecessary care, thereby reducing costs. In addition, greater efficiencies from health IT will lower future health-care insurance premiums while simultaneously improving clinical outcomes. Health IT reduces administrative costs and eliminates duplicative and lost test results, which today accounts for approximately 20 percent of all tests.
The Health IT Now! Coalition believes federal legislation should include:
The Health IT NOW! Coalition is a nonprofit coalition based in Alexandria, VA whose membership includes patient groups, providers, and employers. Its primary focus is to promote the rapid deployment of health information technology across America by urging Congress to adopt interoperability legislation.
Visit www.healthITnow.org to learn more about the coalition, its principles and its membership.
American Academy of Nursing
American Homeowners Grassroots Alliance
American Society of Clinical Oncology
The Boeing Company
Consumers for Competitive Choice
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers
National Alliance for Caregiving
National Alliance on Mental Illness
National Association of Manufacturers
National Disease Clusters Alliance
National Medical Association
National MS Society
National Patient Advocate Foundation
National Retail Federation
Parkinson's Action Network
World Institute on Disability
-- Permanence in statute for a federal responsibility to lead a public- private process to establish standards for system interoperability, product certification, and quality measures and an accelerated process for standards improvement; -- Federal financial incentives to practitioners of care to facilitate the adoption of Health IT, and for communities, states, and other e