Key Barriers

There are still many key barriers to EMR adoption and interoperability.

The October 2014 report to Congress expresses barriers that still remain in the health IT adoption process.
This progress has laid a strong base for health IT adoption and created a growing demand for its interoperability that not only supports the care continuum, but also supports health generally. Despite progress in establishing standards and services to support health information exchange and interoperability, practice patterns have not changed to the point that health care providers share patient health information electronically across organizational, vendor, and geographic boundaries. Electronic health information is not yet sufficiently standardized to allow seamless interoperability, as it is still inconsistently expressed through technical and medical vocabulary, structure, and format, thereby limiting the potential uses of the information to improve health and care. Patient electronic health information needs to be available for appropriate use in solving major challenges, such as providing more effective care and informing and accelerating scientific research.
Additionally, health IT adoption remains a lower priority among providers that are not eligible for incentive payments under the EHR Incentive Programs, such as long-term care, post-acute care, and behavioral health settings. Effective communication and information sharing across all health care providers is essential for improving care quality and community health. Better alignment of health IT solutions among all provider types could promote electronic exchange and care coordination activities among all providers.

Click here for the full report. Report to Congress 2014