The nation's largest physician groups are progressing toward Y2K compliance, according to a survey released last week by the American Medical Group Association.
Overall, about 96% of the trade association's member groups expect to be Y2K compliant by Jan. 1, the AMGA said. Eleven percent are ready now.
Billing and financial systems will be best prepared, with nearly 87% of groups expecting the systems to be Y2K compliant at the stroke of midnight on Dec. 31. That's followed by biomedical equipment, with 84%; facility infrastructure, with 79%; and clinical and medical records, with 77%.
The average projected date for compliance is Aug. 11. For each medical group, an average 65% of the systems are Y2K compliant, the AMGA said.
The association, based in Alexandria, Va., represents about 230 medical groups that have about 200 physicians each.
Physician organizations generally are considered to be among the segments of the healthcare industry that are least prepared for the year 2000.
The AMGA said its survey reveals good news about its members, which constitute some of the largest and most sophisticated medical groups in the country, including Cleveland Clinic; Henry Ford Health System in Detroit; Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.; Palo Alto (Calif.) Medical Foundation; and Permanente Federation.
"These survey results demonstrate that AMGA members are aware of the critical nature of this issue and are working aggressively to take the necessary steps to become Y2K compliant," said AMGA Chief Executive Officer Donald Fisher.
On a cautionary note, however, only about half of the association's 230 member groups responded to the survey.