Study: U.S. behind other countries in EMR use

A new study suggests that the U.S. isn't just adopting EMRs slowly, but we're doing it more slowly than other countries. The study by the Commonwealth Fund concluded that at current adoption rates, it will take more than 30 years to get clinical-support tools to all U.S. doctors. While EMR use in the U.S. grew to 28 percent in 2006 vs. 17 percent in 2001, that's still well behind other countries. For example, 98 percent of practices in the Netherlands are using EMRs that are more likely to have advanced clinical functions allowing for HIE connectivity, while New Zealand has an EMR adoption rate of 92 percent.

The same study concluded that the U.S. healthcare system's problems haven't improved since 2006, when the group's first National Scorecard was released. For example, it notes that 42 percent of U.S. adults, or more than 75 million citizens, were uninsured or underinsured during 2007. That's up from 35 percent in 2003.

To learn more about the study:
- read this Modern Healthcare article
- read this Commonwealth Fund analysis

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