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Providers Use health information Technology to improve Patients care

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The University of Missouri has a two-year, $6.8 million cooperative agreement to help patients throughoutMU the state benefit from increased use of this health information technology, since electronic health records considered to be one of the greatest advances of modern medicine. It can provide a patient's entire medical history and a wealth of other information at the click of a button.

The Missouri Health Information Technology (HIT) Assistance Center will select electronic health records best suited the healthcare providers practices. The center will then help the providers use the technology to improve quality, safety and efficiency in patient care. It will also assist 3,200 primary care providers in better understanding electronic health records through a variety of outreach and education programs. "Our focus is helping primary care providers select, adopt and begin meaningful use of electronic health records," said Grant Savage, PhD, the project's principal investigator and chair of the medical school's Department of Health Management and Informatics. "We see this as a way to dramatically improve the quality of care for the neediest people in Missouri."

According to the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services data, it indicates that Missouri patients could particularly benefit from the electronically enhanced tracking and sharing of information about health risks and diseases. "Missouri rates for cardiovascular disease, cancer, kidney disease, infant mortality, obesity and smoking are among the worst in the nation," said Karen Edison, MD, the project's co-principal investigator and director of MU's Center for Health Policy. "Electronic health records are another important tool that can empower patients and physicians in their efforts to improve health. Studies have also found that primary care providers are at the forefront of practicing preventive medicine, which is essential for improving population health and reducing overall health costs." Robert Churchill, MD, Hugh E. and Sarah D. Stephenson Dean of the MU School of Medicine said "Electronic health records are an increasingly important component of the University of Missouri's efforts to improve patient care, medical education, research and the economy," added "As the primary provider of medical education for Missouri, MU has a unique ability to lead this statewide transformation in health care." Edison mentioned that "Our strengths lie in the strong partnerships that form the Missouri HIT Assistance Center," he said "The foundational support of these groups will be integral to our success."


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