The Kentucky Regional Extension Center has helped more than 1,000 health care providers transition to electronic health records, with specialists advising providers so they can meet the federal standards of "Meaningful Use."
"Quick access to electronic health records can make the difference in a provider's ability to treat the patient, whether it means checking a patient's cholesterol during a routine examination or identifying a medication allergy during an emergency," said Dr. Carol Steltenkamp, who directs the KY-REC and is the chief medical officer and pediatrician at UK HealthCare.
The adoption of EHRs by providers doubled from 17 percent in 2008 to 34 percent in 2011, the National Center for Health Statistics reports. As of Nov. 30, 2011, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services had paid out more than $920 million in Medicare EHR incentives and $916 in Medicaid incentives, UKNow reports. The use of electronic prescribing, which allows physicians to generate, transmit and file patient prescriptions, has increased from 0.8 percent in December 2006 to 40.2 percent in September 2011, the nation's largest e-prescribing network Surescripts reports. (Read more)