HHS has announced $162 million in awards to 16 states and state-designated organizations to promote widespread meaningful use of health information technology throughout the country. Funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, commonly known as the stimulus law, the awards are part of a $2 billion effort to achieve meaningful use and provide use of an electronic health record for every citizen by 2014. According to HHS, every state and eligible territory has now been awarded funds under the program.
“States play a critical leadership role in advancing the development of the exchange capacity of healthcare providers and hospitals within their states and across the nation,” David Blumenthal, national coordinator for health information technology, said in the announcement about the awards. “Health information exchange will enable eligible healthcare providers to be deemed meaningful users of health IT and receive incentive payments under the Medicare and Medicaid electronic health-record incentive program.”
Last month, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced $750 million in funding for hospitals and physicians to adopt EHRs, which was also part of the stimulus funds.