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Health Information Technology Model Implementation Considerations

Health information technology (HIT) can facilitate and support care coordination. A combination of systems and tools, such as electronic health records, patient registries, and health information exchanges, may be necessary. Integrating these systems will help providers to follow patients over time and enable providers to collect data that can be used for population health management.

When implementing HIT, care coordination programs may need to consider the following:

  • Customization of HIT tools
  • Changes to the healthcare provider's workflow
  • Implementation costs such as licenses and infrastructure
  • Training needs for healthcare providers and other staff
  • Data sharing, such as interoperability, between healthcare organizations
  • Agreements for data sharing

HIT implementation is necessary for accountable care organizations (ACOs). ACOs have unique HIT needs which no single tool provides. These include querying and reporting on patient populations and integrating data across multiple facilities using different HIT systems.

Regional Extension Centers can assist providers with HIT implementation. Participating in an ACO or forming networks and partnerships may allow rural providers with more limited resources and capacity to pool their resources.

The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has compiled the following HIT resources tailored to rural communities: