News: Community-based information exchanges decrease costs, study shows

November 7, 2008

Community-based electronic exchanges of health information are decreasing the cost of care, according to a survey by the non-profit eHealth Initiative.

Community-based electronic exchanges of health information between physicians, hospitals, health plans, and patients are decreasing the cost of care, according to a survey by the non-profit eHealth Initiative.

Sixty-nine percent of the exchanges reported fewer redundant tests, medication errors, hospital admissions because of errors, and less time spent on administrative paperwork. More than half reported better access to test results, improved compliance with chronic care and prevention guidelines because of easier patient tracking through multiple providers, and reductions in medical malpractice insurance costs among doctors.

With the reduced costs, 69 percent of the exchanges reported a positive financial return on their investment. In 2007, 31 percent reported a positive ROI.