Health IT initiatives should not be affected by health reform ruling
When the Supreme Court rules on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act later this week their decision is expected to have far-reaching implications for the entire healthcare industry. However, experts are increasingly saying the outcome is likely to have little to do with the adoption of health IT tools like electronic health records.
Jackie Lucas, the vice president and chief information officer at Baptist Healthcare System in Kentucky, told the Wall Street Journal that even though there are several provisions in the law that indirectly incentivize technology adoption, striking down the law may not have a major impact on EHR implementation.
This is because many healthcare providers have already started working toward getting systems up and running.
"We're well into our electronic health record implementation," Lucas told the news source. "It won’t impact our plans."
The Affordable Care Act enabled government agencies to set up new initiatives, such as the Shared Savings program, which rewards physicians for lowering costs. Implementing an EHR system is not required by the program, but does make it feasible for physicians to meet the regulations. However, the main incentive source, the meaningful use program, will stay in place regardless of how the court rules.