Thursday, April 7, 2011

CDC Sees EHRs As Public Health 'Game Changer' -- InformationWeek

Sometimes forgotten in the rush to install electronic health records (EHRs) is that improving population and public health is a major goal of the federal meaningful use EHR incentive program. But many in the public health community are counting on greater EHR adoption and interoperability among physicians and hospitals to help identify and respond to future disease outbreaks, according to a top government health IT official.

"Public health agencies, from local to state to federal, have been building information technology for years, but because we don't have a lot of connections to y'all, we don't have a lot of information to share," Dr. Seth Foldy, director of the public health informatics and technology program office at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), said Tuesday. "In the future, we assume that most of our public health allies will be perched in front of their EHRs."


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