CHICAGO (April 30, 2014) – The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) introduced Regional Extension Centers (RECs) into the healthcare lexicon with these state-based and regional organizations designed to help eligible providers achieve meaningful use (MU).
Funding for RECs from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) ends at the close of 2014, but respondents to the 2014 HIMSS Regional Extension Center Survey indicated they will continue to do business. Results show:
- 85 percent of respondents indicated they did not expect to close their doors;
- 28 percent of the 36 executive respondents reported their funding ran out before the end of February 2014;
- About three-quarters (72 percent) had applied for a no-cost extension of their ONC funding;
- Nearly half are creating strategic partnerships with other organizations in their service area; and
- Almost half reported that they have received state funding to maintain operations.
Conducted in December 2013 and January 2014, the survey included 39 respondents representing 37 REC organizations. Almost half of the respondents (46 percent) said they were President/Chief Executive Officer/Executive Director of the REC with another 13 percent of respondents noted they were the REC Director. Other respondent titles included Director of IT/IS, VP of IT/IS, Manager of IT/IS, Chief Information Officer or staff-level IT/IS. In addition, respondents are from 35 states with at least one respondent from all nine US census regions.
“According to our results, the survey respondents understand the need for and value of collaborative efforts with other RECS and organizations to support and be part of the services they offer,” says Lisa Gallagher, vice president, technology solutions, HIMSS. Gallagher explained that 92 percent of the respondents indicated they are focused on financial sustainability for their REC, with various funding options and educational support from ONC/CMS cited to help maintain the services offered. “The survey respondents also offer a positive outlook for their REC as they continue focus on future endeavors.”
Read the complete report of the 2014 HIMSS Regional Extension Center Survey.
HIMSS is a global, cause-based, not-for-profit organization focused on better health through information technology (IT). HIMSS leads efforts to optimize health engagements and care outcomes using information technology.
HIMSS is a cause-based, global enterprise producing health IT thought leadership, education, events, market research and media services around the world. Founded in 1961, HIMSS encompasses more than 52,000 individuals, of which more than two-thirds work in healthcare provider, governmental and not-for-profit organizations across the globe, plus over 600 corporations and 250 not-for-profit partner organizations, that share this cause. HIMSS, headquartered in Chicago, serves the global health IT community with additional offices in the United States, Europe, and Asia.