Coalition endorses national HIT system legislation

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The “Divided We Fail” coalition, comprised of the AARP, Business Roundtable and SEIU, which together represent more than 50 million Americans, endorsed bi-partisan legislation that spurs adoption of a nationwide interoperable HIT system.

The "Wired for Health Care Quality Act” was recently introduced by Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Chairman Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.) and ranking minority member Michael B. Enzi (R-Wyo.).

"Health IT is about bringing safety and efficiency to our healthcare system," said AARP CEO Bill Novelli. "People seeking treatment have enough to worry about; if we can alleviate the fear that an error will occur, we need to try to do that. A secure, uniform, interoperable system that works for patients and providers will save time, stress and money."

"Healthcare costs are the number-one cost pressure facing American businesses today, inhibiting job creation and hurting America's ability to compete in global markets,” said John J. Castellani, Business Roundtable president. "With a projected $165 billion in annual savings, a national health IT infrastructure can certainly help ameliorate this situation, putting affordable, quality healthcare within reach for Americans. We certainly hope the Senate will quickly pass this legislation and inspire their counterparts in the House to follow suit.”

"With the involvement of frontline nurses and other caregivers, HIT holds the promise to improve patient safety, reduce administrative costs, and allow caregivers more time with patients,” said SEIU President Andy Stern. "HIT can transform healthcare for the benefit of those who deliver it and those who need it.”