I’m Opposed to a $30M Wisconsin Medical Records Subsidy

Sandy Cullen:

A proposal by Gov. Jim Doyle to spend $30 million to help fund electronic medical records systems is just a “drop in the bucket” of what it would take to enable all of the state’s health-care providers to access patients’ histories at the push of a button, medical experts said.

Doyle said Thursday that he wants to create a $20 million grant program to help nonprofit organizations transition from paper documents to technology he says will reduce medical errors and improve quality.

Another $10 million in tax credits would go to for-profit hospitals and doctors to help cover the cost of their transition.

Cullen’s article rightly points out that the “$30M is a drop in the bucket” in a system with billions flowing through it (I don’t think they need a subsidy). Creating another layer of tax redistribution (from payroll and income taxes and fees) for state incentives and health care system funding, given the many other state spending priorities, not to mention the $1.6B structural deficit, is misquided. I wonder who is behind this?

Link Hoewing discusses electronic medical records from Verizon’s perspective (Verizon is installing Fiber broadband to the home in many markets, unlike AT&T).