To prevent medical errors, reduce costs, improve quality, and produce greater value for health care expenditures, President Bush has called for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to develop and implement a strategic plan to guide the nationwide implementation of health information technology (IT) in both the public and private health care sectors. The Departments of Defense (DOD) and Veterans Affairs (VA), along with other countries, have already taken steps to improve health care delivery and administration by implementing IT solutions. GAO was asked to provide an overview of HHS's recent efforts to develop a national health IT strategy for realizing the President's vision, and to identify lessons learned from DOD's, VA's, and other countries' experiences in implementing health IT.
Recommendations for Executive Action
|Department of Health and Human Services||1. As a result of our work, the Secretary of Health and Human Services should establish detailed plans and milestones for each phase of the framework for strategic action and take steps to ensure that those plans are followed and milestones are met.|