Health Information Technology in the United States, 2015: Transition to a Post-HITECH World
The inaugural edition of the Annual Report on Health Information Technology in the United States was released in 2006. At that time, the technology landscape was very different than today. The iPhone® had not yet been released. Facebook had just become available to the general public and Twitter was in its infancy. Today, the landscape is markedly different. Ninety-percent of Americans have cell phones and of these, 64 percent own a smartphone. These mobile devices are used extensively for communication, searching for information, and sharing data. The explosion of applications and new mobile technologies has altered the way Americans communicate and share information across the spectrum. The change in the use of mobile technologies over the past nine years has been accompanied by an increased use of health information technology (HIT) in physician offices and hospitals. Unlike the growth in mobile technologies, which was supported by consumer demand, the growth of HIT proceeded more slowly and was advanced through significant policy changes and public investment.
The HIT adoption initiative has been tracking the landscape of HIT adoption before, during, and after this period of policy activity and public investment. In this final report, we review the progress made on HIT adoption, examine remaining barriers, and discuss options for ensuring that the nation continues to advance toward a truly interoperable health care system.