Electronic Medical Record/Electronic Health Record Systems of Office-based Physicians: United States, 2009 and Preliminary 2010 State Estimates
by Chun-Ju Hsiao, Ph.D.; Esther Hing, M.P.H.; Thomas C. Socey; and Bill Cai, M.A.Sci., Division of Health Care Statistics
Policymakers’ interest in the progress of health information technology adoption by health care providers has increased greatly since The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was signed into law in 2009. A portion of the bill, the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act, authorized incentive payments through Medicare and Medicaid to providers that use certified electronic health records to achieve specified improvements in care delivery (1). The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services finalized the meaningful use criteria for the first 2 years of the three-stage incentive program in mid-2010 (2). The National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (NAMCS), conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), is an annual nationally representative survey of patient visits that includes office-based physicians and collects information on the adoption and use of electronic medical records/electronic health records (EMRs/EHRs). Since 2008, a supplemental mail survey on EMRs/EHRs has been conducted in addition to the core NAMCS, an in-person survey. In 2010, the mail survey sample size increased five-fold to allow for state-level estimates, and survey questions were slightly modified to ask physicians about their intentions to apply for meaningful use incentive payments. EMR/EHR systems of office-based physicians—The estimate of all or partial EMR/EHR systems was obtained from the question, “Does this practice use electronic medical records or electronic health records (not including billing records)?” In addition to the question asking about all or partial EMR/EHR systems, physicians also reported the...