Published Date 4/11/08 4:55 PM
More sophisticated use of health information technology (IT) is needed in nursing facilities in order to develop information exchanges across short-term and long-term care facilities, according to the author of a new study, Modern Healthcare reports. Slated for publication in the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's Advances in Patient Safety, the study, titled "Measuring IT Sophistication in Nursing Homes," suggests that Missouri nursing homes use "minimal" levels of IT. Specifically, the study of 199 Missouri facilities found that larger, noninvestor-owned nursing homes had a higher percentage of IT use in their admission process than other facilities. However, both smaller and larger noninvestor-owned facilities used less advanced technology in the discharge process, according to one report author. The study also found that investor-owned, medium-size facilities were less likely to use IT for resident care management but did use IT to estimate bed availability. Modern Healthcare, meanwhile, notes that the study supports the results of a study released last year by the American Health Care Association and the National Center for Assisted Living, which found that IT adoption at nursing homes has lagged behind other health care facilities (DerGurahian, Modern Healthcare, 4/9/08).