After $26 Billion Paid Out, Meaningful Use of Electronic Health Records Only 4 Percent of Target

At a September 3 meeting of the Obama administration’s Health IT Policy Committee, officials disclosed that only 3,154 eligible professionals (doctors, dentists, et cetera) had “attested” to so-called “meaningful use stage 2” to get their bounties from the federal government for installing electronic health records. Only 143 hospitals had attested.

One healthcare leader, who was at the meeting, was disappointed:

“The numbers are very low, particularly for Stage 2 attestation. I mean they are like 4 percent of [providers] that should be currently going for Stage 2,” HITPC member and Intermountain Healthcare CIO Marc Probst commented during the meeting.

This new data reinforces the case made here in March: The billions of taxpayer dollars paid to doctors and hospitals to install electronic health records was wasted. The cost-benefit analysis of federal subsidies to this effort just doesn’t add up.

John R. Graham is a Senior Fellow at the Independent Institute.
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