Online tools and resources available to help states use health IT to improve health care quality and lower cost

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) announced today the availability of online tools and resources designed to help states participating in the State Innovation Models initiative improve health care quality and lower costs.

The State Innovation Models initiative supports states in planning or implementing a customized, fully developed proposal capable of creating statewide health transformation to improve health care, focusing on Medicare, Medicaid, and Children's Health Insurance Program beneficiaries. This new initiative is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services effort to achieve better care, smarter spending of health dollars, and healthier people.

With the support of $665 million in awards, over half of states (34 states and 3 territories, and the District of Columbia), representing nearly two-thirds of the population are participating in the initiative.

As part of an agreement with Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), which funds the State Innovation Models initiative, ONC has developed tools and resources to help leverage existing health IT infrastructure and tools being used by state Medicaid systems and health care providers. These include resources that can help states and health care providers use health IT tools to manage an individual's care for both their primary care and behavioral health needs, ensuring the individual is getting the right care, at the right time, and at the right place. Many of these tools and resources, accessible at www.HealthIT.gov, will also be available to states that are not participating in the State Innovation Models initiative.

"These online resources are part of an overall effort to advance of goals of better care, smarter spending, and, ultimately, healthier people," said Karen DeSalvo, M.D., M.P.H., M.Sc., national coordinator for health IT. "We are focused on supporting states and partners in developing innovative ways to pay for health care, providing tools and resources to support change, and making more information available to consumer and patients to enable them to make the right decisions – at the right time – to improve health and care."

In addition, through the use of the online resources states and health care providers will have resources to help them successfully create and use health IT infrastructure components.

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