North Dakota and Minnesota physicians are aided in the adoption of health information technology (HIT) by the Regional Extension Assistance Center for HIT (REACH). The purpose of the North Dakota and Minnesota REACH is to assist physicians with meaningful use of electronic health record (EHR) systems to improve their quality of care. This Regional Extension Assistance Center was created under the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act’s Health Information Technology Extension Program.
The great number of EHR vendors and the complexity of available software make choosing a suitable EHR software a daunting and time consuming task for physicians. The North Dakota and Minnesota Regional Extension Assistance Center for Health Information Technology can play an important role in guiding physicians through the selection process, as well as the EHR software implementation process. Supporting Health Information Exchanges development is also a long-term goal of the Regional Extension Center.
A selected list of preferred EHR vendors, which were carefully selected out of a group of EMR (electronic medical record) companies, may be offered by some Regional Extension Centers. These preferred EHR vendors have demonstrated a commitment to the health information technology mission. The chosen electronic health record vendors offer greater functionality that enables practices to better participate in the Health Information Exchange and achieve meaningful use of EMR software. Additionally, these EHR vendors facilitate quick and smooth adoption of EHR software for these Regional Extension Assistance Center participants by offering discounted prices and standardized terms and conditions. Regional Extension Center members may also receive group purchasing discounts from these EHR vendors.
The North Dakota and Minnesota Regional Extension Assistance Center for Health Information Technology does not recommend any preferred EHR vendors.