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Hospitals Ramp Up Capital Spending on IT

Rene Letourneau, for HealthLeaders Media, May 6, 2013

"…[O]ur IT capital request is the single largest component of our capital budget, representing approximately 40 percent of the budget for next fiscal year. [The] major factors driving this include ongoing development of our EMR to electronically share healthcare information across multiple care sites, to assure smooth transitions of care and enhance patient safety," she says.

Additionally, Stony Brook is investing capital dollars to make it possible for remote devices to talk to its EMR—another key component for successful coordinated care.

"We are also working to enable greater mobility for clinicians and achieve greater integration of medical devices with our EMR for improved efficiency and patient safety," Tsui-Wu says.

Hospitals and health systems have a lot of competing priorities when it comes to their capital budgets. There is almost no end to the possible facility renovations and medical technology upgrades that could be done, not to mention the myriad merger, acquisition, and physician alignment strategies that are being discussed in every hospital board room right now.

Despite this battle over resources, provider organizations are identifying IT as the area where they are most likely to spend the largest amount of money because they understand that the path forward requires integrated computer networks that allow for a system-wide approach to patient care and population health management.

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