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July 12, 2019

Redefining the Physician’s Role in Cost-Conscious Care: The Potential Role of the Electronic Health Record

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Medicine, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, Washington, DC
  • 2Kenan-Flagler School of Business, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • 3Center for Healthcare Studies, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois
  • 4Departments of Anesthesiology, Biomedical Informatics, Health Policy, and Surgery, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, Tennessee
JAMA. 2019;322(8):721-722. doi:10.1001/jama.2019.9114

Recent health policy efforts have attempted to promote constructive conversations regarding cost-effectiveness by increasing transparency for both patients and physicians. Spurred by access and cost challenges resulting from increasing pharmaceutical prices, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed a rule that would require direct-to-consumer prescription drug advertisements to include the list price for a typical 30-day course of therapy, according to their weighted average cost.1 Even though there may be debates about the right price, this critical step forward is built on the foundation of previously implemented regulations requiring hospitals to publicly post their hospital charge description master or chargemasters.2 This Viewpoint discusses implementing price transparency for health care products and services where physicians spend an increasing proportion of their time—in electronic health records (EHRs).

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