PwC Analysis On the Impact of Health IT Stimulus Funding Finds Future Penalties May Be Bigger Motivator Than Short-term Incentives to Invest in Health IT
Federal stimulus incentives for doctors and hospitals to implement interoperable electronic health records (EHRs) will not nearly compensate them for the overall costs they will incur, but future penalties from reduced Medicare reimbursement could be a bigger motivator, according to an analysis published today by the PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC) Health Research Institute.
In its paper entitled “Rock and a Hard Place: An Analysis of the $36 Billion Impact From Health IT Stimulus Funding,” PricewaterhouseCoopers says that capital-constrained healthcare organizations are struggling to find the necessary funding to purchase EHR systems at a time when they are being asked to cut information technology costs.
In a March 2009 survey of 100 hospital chief information officers (CIOs), PwC found:
- 82 percent of hospital CIOs have already cut their IT spending budgets in 2009 by an average of 10 percent, with one in 10 making more drastic cuts of greater than 30 percent.
- Two-thirds (66 percent) of CIOs say they expect to be asked to make further cuts in IT spend before the end of 2009.
- Sixty-four percent of CIOs agreed that it is impossible to balance demand with the need to cut costs.
- One-half of CIOs with more than 500 beds say that federal funding is “crucial” to their ability to implement EHRs.
Source: GlobeNewswire – Price Waterhouse Coopers