Nearly 18% of U.S. physicians in 2006 had an electronic health record system, and that figure could increase to 30% by 2011, according to a new survey by the Millennium Research Group, United Press International reports.
However, the survey also found that most nonhospital-affiliated small practices will find it difficult to afford the technology and justify the disruption it will cause the practice. Small practices that are not affiliated with hospitals represented nearly 70% of all office-based physicians in 2006.
This will remain true for small practices despite government efforts to aid in the adoption of health IT. However, those efforts, such as allowing hospitals to help affiliated physicians by donating or subsidizing the cost of EHR systems, will help drive growth, the survey suggested (United Press International, 7/17).