Study touts progress for health IT

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Study authors with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), Mathematica Policy Research and the Harvard School of Public Health touted the figures as a major step forward in providing "safer, high-quality care."

"It’s particularly encouraging to see that more doctors and hospitals are using electronic health records, which contribute to better care at the bedside," said RWJF senior vice president John R. Lumpkin said in a statement.

"Hospitals, physicians and other health care providers are clearly taking advantage of recent incentives to embrace the promise of technology," he added.

The report also touted a 10-fold increase in the number of providers who use health IT tools in accordance with the federal "meaningful use" program. The initiative involves using electronic health records to exchange health information and to submit measures of clinical quality.

All Medicare providers will be required to comply with meaningful use standards by 2015 or face fines.