[ Tuesday, August 17, 2004 ]


It's Pete Stark's Fault! I just knew it: according to this GAO report (abstract here), the adoption of new healthcare IT advancements like electronic medical records has been hindered by a hodge-podge of laws and other legal issues, including Stark and Anti-Kickback laws. Doctors are afraid to take IT services offered by hospitals (and hospitals may be wary about offering them) because of the fear that the provision of services would trigger a payment-for-referrals claim. Antitrust laws, tax laws, state licensing laws, intellectual property and malpractice concerns, and other laws also hinder the IT revolution. The GAO faults HHS for not removing thses barriers and uncertainties.

Apparently, HHS disagrees with the GAO, stating that the GAO didn't take into account all HHS has done with regard to privacy and security. Several articles on the issue are here and here, as well as in BNA and Modern Healthcare (subscriptions required).

Jeff [4:15 PM]

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