September 21, 2009 By News Report
While some countries have made dramatic progress in advanced health IT systems, the United States has struggled to make progress and is far behind international best practices, according to a study released today by the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF).The study: Explaining International IT Application Leadership: Health IT, identifies elements contributing to success with health IT, including strong national-level leadership, the use of incentives and mandates, and the deployment of shared IT infrastructure in the health-care sector, and recommends strategies for policymakers to jumpstart progress on health IT adoption. "Countries like Denmark, Finland and Sweden demonstrate that widespread use of mature technologies like electronic health records improve the efficiency and effectiveness of health care," said Daniel Castro, ITIF senior analyst. "Policymakers in the United States should heed the lessons learned by the leaders. This isn't high school -- it's okay to copy from your neighbors."
This Digital Communities white paper highlights discussions with IT officials in four counties that have adopted shared services models. Our aim was to learn about the obstacles these governments have faced when it comes to shared services and what it takes to overcome those roadblocks. We also spoke with several members of the IT industry who have thought long and hard about these issues. The paper offers some best practices for shared government-to-government services, but also points out challenges that government and industry still must overcome before this model gains widespread adoption.