FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 26, 2006
MAYOR BLOOMBERG AND HEALTH COMMISSIONER FRIEDEN ANNOUNCE THAT 1,000 NEW YORK CITY DOCTORS WILL GET ELECTRONIC HEALTH RECORDS SYSTEMS
Mayor Puts $27 Million Behind State of the City and Campaign Pledge to Provide Health Record System to Doctors in New York's Neediest Neighborhoods over the Next Three Years
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH ) Commissioner Thomas R. Frieden today fulfilled a pledge from the Mayor’s campaign and State of the City by announcing that the City has appropriated $27 million to help provide 1,000 New York City Doctors with electronic health records (EHR) systems by 2008. The City’s contribution is being matched by an additional $13 million contributed by the community health centers participating in the program. EHR systems improve the quality, efficiency and safety of medical care. Joining the Mayor at the announcement at the Institute for Urban Family Health (IUFH) was Neil Calman, MD, President and CEO of IUFH and a member of the Executive Committee of the newly launched Primary Care Health Information Consortium. The consortium is made up of 30 community-based primary care networks, which see more than 500,000 patients at 150 sites in the City’s most underserved communities.
“Having the right information at the right time in the right place is critical to making good decisions and to achieving quality results,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “This is especially true in health care. That is why we are investing $27 million to make sure every doctor in underserved communities can have the benefit of the most advanced electronic medical record technology available. New York City is already at the forefront of health information technology. Our Health Department has made great strides in health technology by requiring laboratories to report information electronically, using handheld computers for restaurant inspections, and monitoring 60,000 pieces of health information each day. Their leadership will help provide prevention is key and that health priorities, such as tobacco control, HIV testing and treatment, and diabetes care are reflected in the design and implementation of these systems.”
“Wider implementation of EHR technology will save lives,” said Commissioner Frieden. “In terms of information technology, the health sector is more than a decade behind most of the rest of the economy. With literally thousands of patient care guidelines and tens of thousands of drug interactions, information technology is a necessity for patients and physicians. And EHRs has the potential to create millions of dollars in State Medicaid savings over time through improved prevention, which would reduce costly hospitalizations.”
EHR systems improve the quality, efficiency and safety of medical care Citywide. EHRs provide better care for their patients, help patients more easily navigate the health care system, decrease costly and life threatening medical errors, and close the gap on health disparities. Patients benefit from reduced medical errors, and increased access to better health care.
The principle benefits of EHRs are:
“A modern electronic health records system integrates patient information, the latest medical research, and decision support tools within a single system,” said Neil Calman, MD. “In addition to having access to past patient visits at their fingertips, doctors and nurses can use it to order medications, referrals, and laboratory tests, and to receive electronic information from pharmacists and laboratories. We have also found that these systems can actually improve communication between patients and providers and help us understand and address health disparities.”
Stu Loeser/Jordan Barowitz (212) 788-2958
Andrew Tucker (Department of Health and Mental Hygiene)
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