In 2004, President George W. Bush called for the establishment of a national health information technology (HIT) program by the year 2014. As the American Medical Association (AMA) notes on its Web site, the magnitude of the President’s goal is not insignificant.
Explore this issue:January 2007
According to studies by the Medical Group Management Association and the RAND Corporation, only 20% of large and mid-size medical groups and 15% of small practices have adopted an electronic medical records (EMR) system.
Two terms have been used interchangeably for health information technology: EMRs and electronic health records, or EHRs. The Health Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS), however, believes that the concepts of the two differ. The HIMSS identifies the EMR as the legal record created in hospitals and ambulatory environments that is the source of data for the EHR. According to the AMA, EHRs encompass data of the full patient history across providers and health systems.