Efficient health I.T. could save $408 million Efficient health I.T. could save $408 million

What role could information technology and online health services (Health IT) play in our healthcare system? A recent study done by The Conference Board of Canada and Canada Health Infoway (CHI) indicates the Health IT's role could be larger than we think. It estimated that Canadians could boost economic output by $408 million and save more than 70 million man hours per year by incorporating and properly integrating Health IT into Canada’s healthcare system.  This includes an estimated 18.8 million work hours usually lost to time spent seeing a medical professional, for non-essential services such as prescription renewals, immunization records, or receiving lab test results. The other estimated 51 million lost man hours would normally be spent in non-paid activities including education and leisure time. These hours are from an estimated 47 million in-person medical visits that could have been avoided if Canadians had electronic access to health records, information and tools.

  “Canadians need and want improved, faster access to more convenient health care, and access to their health information such as lab test results and immunization records,” Said Richard Alvarez, President and CEO of CHI, a government funded not-for-profit that invests in the development and adoption of information and communication technology projects in Canada’s healthcare system. This Study is proposing that if patients and their doctors can access health records, tools and information from a centralized healthcare database, Canadians as a whole would be able to save not only time and money (in the form of lost wages) but would also be able to take stress off of Canada’s over burdened health care system.

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