Implement EMR for the Right Reason, Not the Dangling Carrot

Posted on August 1, 2010 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

I’m really glad that the chorus of people singing the tune I’ve been singing is starting to swell. Here’s some comments from Barbara Hales of The Write Treatment talking about the right way to implement an EMR and the problems with the EMR stimulus carrot approach:

I agree with you that EMRs should be implemented because it is the right thing to do,not because of the incentives. The government incentive is a dangling carrot.

Money promised for implementation comes by way of increased Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements by 1-2% from each claim. Talks of slashing Medicare reimbursements by 21% came soon after. So after investing money and time in a system, you are going to get….what was that?

This was considered by the government when they issued the proposal that rather than getting money, reimbursements would be taken away as a penalty for failure to comply as of 2014.

Clever. Not only will they not have to dish out much money, now they will be getting money ( in the sense that services will not cost as much)

Now consider the physicians that do not have a large percentage of patients that participate in theses Medicare and Medicaid programs. They too, will not be seeing any government subsidy for implementation.

Yes, get the system because of increased efficiency or because you can achieve more with it, like any piece of medical equipment. If it is for the subsidy, don’t hold your breath!

Nicely said Barbara!!

P.S. I think the thing that EMR and HIPAA needs is a pretty face like Barbara’s to put on the site. They have some over on the Healthcare blog and HISTalk has Inga. Maybe a pretty female face is what’s really missing from EMR and HIPAA.