2009 Software Source
The race is on for information technology
tronic record, according to the
Technology summit 2004 National Nursing Home
urges providers to Survey. Seventeen percent have
gone further, automating physi-
seize stimulus funds cian and medication orders, as
By Michele Hayunga well as laboratory information and
With an ambitious timeline for medication administration.
computerizing America’s health “We’re at least as advanced as
records, backed by $19 billion in the hospitals and doctors—and
stimulus funds, the administra- probably ahead,” said presenter
tion has signaled its commitment Barbara Manard, vice president
to health information technology of long-term care health strate-
Photos: Michele Hayunga
(HIT). Long-term care providers gies for the American Associa-
must prepare now if they want a tion of Homes and Services for
piece of the pie, advocates say. the Aging.
“The next step is to win friends, Nursing homes could poten-
influence people and track the Long-term care providers need to act now to attract government stimulus tially take another leap forward,
money,” said Yael Harris, Ph.D., funding to upgrade their information technology infrastructures. Stake- depending on how the Centers for
holders discuss future moves at the long-term care IT summit (above).
senior policy analyst with the Office Medicare & Medicaid Services
of the National Coordinator. He (CMS) structures MDS 3.0. A
spoke at the fifth Long-Term Care or health information exchange CIO of ACTS Retirement-Life number of groups are urging CMS
Health Information Technology (HIE). Providers need to find out Communities. As stimulus money to require standards-based MDS
Summit in Washington. who’s leading the effort in their becomes available, providers with transmissions.
The American Health Infor- state and advocate for long-term established relationships will be “CMS has the opportunity to be
mation Management Association care to be included, advised Majd able to capitalize on it quickly. a leader in migrating almost one
(AHIMA), in collaboration with Alwan, Ph.D., director of the Cen- “We have 20 campuses, and I hundred percent of nursing homes
the major associations represent- ter for Aging Services Technolo- plan to visit each and every hospi- in the U.S. to a standards-based