Most hospitals won't reach HIMSS Analytics Stage 7 until 2035, study finds

Most hospitals have already adopted EMRs. However, the majority won't deploy more advanced capabilities on the software until 2035, according to a study published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research.

To forecast EMR functionality among U.S. hospitals through 2035, the research team — comprised of five scientists from across the U.S. and one from Australia — analyzed data collected from the eight-stage EMR Adoption Model, a program of Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society subsidiary HIMSS Analytics, between 2006 to 2014.

The EMR Adoption model measures the degree to which a hospital uses its EMR functions, such as integrating device encryption or smart infusion pumps.

Based on historical data, the research team's predictive model indicated that hospitals on Stage 5 should peak by 2019 and hospitals on Stage 6 should peak by 2026. However, they observed no peak in hospitals on Stage 7 by the year 2035.

"According to our forecasts, the majority of hospitals will not reach Stage 7 until 2035, absent major policy changes or leaps in technological capabilities," the study authors concluded. "These results indicate that U.S. hospitals are decades away from fully implementing sophisticated decision support applications and interoperability functionalities in EHRs."

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