Evolution of Health Care Information Systems Essay

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Evolution of Health Care Information Systems In the mid-1960s, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed Medicare and Medicaid into law, which gave health benefits to poor and elderly Americans. Because of the reimbursement methods of these public systems, large hospitals and health care institutions began incorporating health information systems into their business. They discovered that better record keeping and faster billing resulted in rapid collections and fewer lost charges. Over time, these systems improved and became more accessible to smaller institutions through shared systems (Wager, Lee, & Glaser, 2009). The United States health care system has experienced a rapid growth with the use of health information systems and technology over the last two decades. In the past, health information technology was not considered essential, but it was helpful to those who had it. At present, they are the partial basis for health care and medical advancements (Haux, 2010). Hospitals are realizing the importance of enhanced technology, and they are embracing the federally mandated requirements of incorporating electronic medical records (EMR) into their health care information systems (HCIS). To understand better the evolution of HCIS, this discussion will include a comparison of a contemporary health care facility with one of 20 years ago as well as two major events and technological advances that influenced the evolution of HCIS. Health Care Information Systems According to Wager, Lee, and Glaser, the definition of an HCIS is “an arrangement of information (data), processes, people, and information technology that interact to collect, process, store, and provide as output the information needed to support the health care organization” (2009, p. 88). The two main types of health information systems are administrative and clinical. Administrative systems collect and

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