Advances in clinical information technology are likely to make hospitals more efficient and widen the gap between hospitals and health systems that are financially strong and those that are not, Moody's Investors Service said in a new report. Despite uncertain near-term benefits, IT investment will be one of the main vehicles for hospitals to achieve long-term strategic goals, Moody's said. Benefits of increased IT spending include improved patient safety and quality; better decisionmaking by administrators; eased use of electronic health records; more competitive hospitals; and better preparedness for pay-for-performance initiatives. Hospitals that can't afford to spend on IT will find it harder to compete with those that can, Moody's said. Challenges remain to implementing IT efficiently, including the high costs associated with keeping up to date and difficulties getting physicians and nurses to use the systems. -- by Paul Barr
Clinical IT to yield more efficient hospitals: Moody's
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