Regarding Joseph Conn's "Researchers suggest EHRs linked to higher costs":
There is a big 'duh'! Anyone who has seen or tried to implement any information technology solution knows that it increases cost and time spent doing almost anything except for solving a complex mathematical problem. There may be advantages to an IT solution but rarely does it decrease cost or work. This was Microsoft's bill of goods that was part of what drove their success. It is largely not true, but it lives and just may be the great urban myth. In a health care reimbursement environment where the hospital and doctor have little or no control over their pricing, pricing / fees are determined by insurance and government; it does not make any business sense to increase overhead. It especially makes no sense to implement an EHR since it has little chance of providing any return on the money invested. Every time, increased costs are mandated the viability hospitals and physician practices are jeopardized. This degree of economic pressure cannot possibly lead to improved care - a little common sense here. A nationwide EHR will give insurance companies and the government easy access to information that they do not have now. It is not such a stretch to see how this will allow them to exert more and more control over medical decision making and limit resources. (No I am not paranoid, just thinking it through.) Danger, danger everyone!
Robert AldorotyNew York