News and Commentary

Headlines On Deadline  September 2008

Sixty-three percent of health care providers expect electronic health records to have “a lot” or a “tremendous” impact on improving health care, according to the IVANS 2008 Healthcare Provider survey. Twenty-seven percent of respondents said EHRs would have some effect on improving health care, 6 percent said EHRs would have little effect, and 4 percent said EHRs would have no effect. . . . The United States Census Bureau reported in its Annual Social and Economic Supplement that both the percentage and number of people without health insurance decreased in 2007. The percentage without health insurance was 15.3 percent in 2007, down from 15.8 percent in 2006, and the number of uninsured was 45.7 million, down from 47.0 million. It further reported that the percentage of people covered by private health insurance was 67.5 percent, down from 67.9 percent in 2006. Further highlights show that the percentage of people covered by employment-based health insurance decreased to 59.3 in 2007 from 59.7 percent in 2006. The number of people covered by employment-based health insurance, 177.4 million, was not statistically different from 2006. . . . Quality Compass 2008, the NCQA’s compilation of clinical performance and patient experience, is now available. It’s the first time that individual preferred provider organization plan data will be included in the compilation. “Two-thirds of privately insured Americans receive their coverage through PPOs,” says NCQA chief information officer Rick Moore. “The inclusion of this data allows decision-makers in the health plan contracting cycle make meaningful comparisons among both health maintenance organizations and preferred provider organization plans.”

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