UCF Helps Doctors Switch to Electronic Health Records
The tech side of the Affordable Care Act takes place largely in the doctor's office. It's the digitizing of health records so they can be accessed and shared electronically. It's gotten some resistance from doctors, but a program run by UCF is helping doctors sort things out.
[Josue Rodas, Executive Director of the University of Central Florida Regional Extension Center]
Electronic Health records are considered an important component in the Affordable Care Act because they’re viewed as key to better health care for less money. There’s a financial incentive tied to Medicaid and Medicare for doctors who make the switch. But the software can be expensive and with over 200 different systems on the market- shopping for a system can really tie up a doctor’s time. That’s where the UCF College of Medicine’s Regional Extension Center steps in. Executive Director Josue Rodas says his team advises doctors on how to make the transition to electronic health records. One doctor recently told Rodas making the switch made a difference.
“He had significant challenges to get there, but through the hand-holding and the support that we’ve provided, he feels that he’s a much better practicing physician now, not that he’s doing anything different, he just has the tools and the assistance that he needs to provide better care,” he says.
The UCF Regional Extension Center is one of 62 organizations nationwide to receive grant money to help doctors make the switch. The focus right now is on electronic health records, but Rodas says the records are just the first step in designing a sustainable model for health care.