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Capitol Health Call
September 8, 2010

Funding Health IT

JAMA. 2010;304(10):1060. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.1285

Bills introduced in the House and Senate are intended to ensure that multicampus hospitals adopting health information technology (IT) that meets appropriate standards would receive federal incentive payments that reflect the higher costs of implementation at multiple campuses.

At issue is language in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which provides Medicare and Medicaid health IT incentive payments for adopting health IT. The monies are to be given to hospitals based on their single Medicare provider number—a number that would not accurately account for multicampus hospital systems and that could deprive such systems of adequate incentive payments. The proposed legislation (HR 6072 and S 3708 [http://thomas.loc.gov]) clarifies that health IT incentives in the Recovery Act should address the incremental acquisition, training, and implementation costs facing such hospital systems.

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