EHR adoption jumps for hospital-owned practices

Proving once again that there is no single, reliable way to determine true EHR adoption rates, research firm SK&A reports that 38.7 percent of medical offices in the U.S. have EHRs, up from 36.1 percent in January. That's more than 11 percentage points below the rate CompTIA reported a few days earlier for all healthcare providers.

But, perhaps supporting the CompTIA data, SK&A says 54.9 percent of hospital-owned medical practices and 61.2 percent of physician offices owned by large health systems have EHRs. In both of these cases, adoption jumped by about 11 points since the start of the year.

"Physician groups owned by hospitals and health systems are moving at lightning speed," SK&A executive Dave Escalante told InformationWeek. "In a span of just nine months, these office types had an EHR adoption growth rate of more than 10 [percentage points], indicating their parent companies have the financial means and know-how to support immediate system-wide changes."

What a lot of physician practices may not have is enough of a system to achieve "meaningful use" and earn federal incentive money, however. With just 28 percent of respondents reporting that they keep electronic patient notes, 27 percent saying they have digitized lab values or X-rays and 26 percent writing electronic prescriptions, well short of half of medical practices seem to have complete systems.

To learn more:
- read this InformationWeek story
- see this SK&A press release