Global Assessment of the Value of Health Information Technology and Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology Programs

2010-2015
Prepared for
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology

The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act sought to promote a nationwide electronic health information system. The act encouraged a variety of initiatives, such as financial incentives for providers, regulatory and technical infrastructure, and creation of a skilled labor force to assist in adopting and maintaining the infrastructure. This project for the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) developed an interdependency model that made explicit the vital connections across the HITECH initiatives. Using this model, we gathered primary data through interviews with key informants and examined the critical linkages among the initiatives and between the initiatives and meaningful use of electronic health records (EHRs). In addition, by synthesizing analyses of secondary data and primary data gathered through site visits, Mathematica provided ONC with a vehicle for assessing the effect of increased EHR adoption and meaningful use on health care quality and costs. The study provided insight into what features worked best, how success varied across areas, and future steps that would best fulfill ONC’s goals.