Kennedy, Murphy to introduce health IT bill

Kennedy, Murphy to introduce health IT bill

Reps. Tim Murphy (R-Pa.) and Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I.) plan to introduce legislation tomorrow accelerating the adoption of IT to improve the safety, efficiency and coordination of health care.

Murphy and Kennedy will be joined by Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Mel Martinez (R-Fla.) and former House speaker Newt Gingrich in a briefing about the bill, the 21st Century Health Information Act.

The bill would use federal funds to encourage regional health care networks, bump up Medicare reimbursements for physicians participating in regional networks and make loans available to regional health information organizations for upfront costs. It would also require that government purchase only health IT products certified as interoperable.

Once introduced, the House Energy and Commerce Committee, of which Murphy is a member, would have first crack at the bill, a Kennedy spokesman said.

Murphy and Kennedy co-chair the 21st Century Health Caucus, which consists of about 20 House members.

About the Author

Mary Mosquera is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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