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Health Aff (Millwood). 1997 May-Jun;16(3):106-19.

Health information systems and the role of state government.


State government entities have created a range of innovative electronic information systems to support their diverse and evolving roles in the health care system. Primary goals of these initiatives include improvement of traditional public health programs, meaningful oversight of providers, simplification of administrative procedures, and support of state purchasing decisions. We establish a taxonomy of state efforts, describing primary capabilities to (1) provide meaningful data to state decisionmakers; (2) disseminate information to purchasers and consumers; (3) coordinate and improve government services; (4) establish mechanisms for electronic transactions; and (5) support telemedicine services. Reductions in the costs of technology and use of the Internet have dramatically increased state capabilities in recent years. Both the successes and failures of existing programs offer important lessons for states that are initiating new electronic communication initiatives.

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