Operational Health Information Exchanges Show Substantial Growth, But Long-Term Funding Remains A Concern

Policy-makers are actively promoting the electronic exchange of health information to improve the quality and efficiency of health care.

The researchers conducted a national survey of organizations facilitating health information exchange, to assess national progress. They found that 30 percent of hospitals and 10 percent of ambulatory practices now participate in one of the 119 operational health information exchange efforts across the United States, substantial growth from prior surveys. However, they also found that 74 percent of health information exchange efforts report struggling to develop a sustainable business model.

Their findings suggest that despite progress, there is a substantial risk that many current efforts to promote health information exchange will fail when public funds supporting these initiatives are depleted.