Clinical Information Technologies and Inpatient Outcomes

This article examines how information technology in hospitals influences both clinical and financial outcomes. There is little research on the effect of information technology on hospitals on a large scale.

The authors conducted a cross-sectional study using the Clinical Information Technology Assessment Scale. Forty-one of 72 urban hospitals in Texas provided information for the scale. The authors studied whether inpatient mortality and complications and cost of stay were associated with the level of automation of hospital information.

Key Findings:

  • Higher levels of information automation were associated with lower mortality rates, lower rates of complications and lower costs.
  • For every 10-point increase in information automation, fatal hospitalizations decreased by 15 percent, risk of complications fell by 16 percent, and costs dropped for all hospital admissions.

This research suggests that information technology holds great promise in its capacity to improve clinical outcomes and lower financial costs of care.