Health executives give opinions on better care

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted Feb. 14, 2005

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Top health care industry executives say greater use of information technology, practice guidelines, patient safety measures and disease management programs would improve quality care and contain costs, according to a new survey.

The survey, conducted by Harris Interactive, found that 40% of respondents believe a combination of IT, practice guidelines and patient safety measures is an effective and desirable way to contain health care costs. Furthermore, 27% listed disease management programs as the second most effective way to better manage costs.

In the survey, 38% said slow adoption of IT poses the most serious threat to the health care industry, closely followed by rising medical costs (37%) and the increasing number of uninsured/or underinsured (34%). More than two-thirds of respondents who work for hospitals, physician practices or health insurers say their organization has increased or accelerated their investments in clinical IT and electronic medical records, and an additional 15% plan to make new investments soon.

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