Changes to the healthcare insurance status quo won and lost elections, revised and created business plans, and kept harried CIOs and their overworked staffs up at night. But it also generated opportunities for IT professionals in the healthcare industry to save their organizations time and money, reshape burdensome workflows, and improve patient care. When he was elected, President Barack Obama pledged to change healthcare insurance -- and this year marked months of debate and political hijinks
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Led by United States Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, the federal government in 2010 took the first step in defining meaningful use. In order to receive the sliding scale of reimbursement for their investment on electronic medical records (EMRs), physicians must demonstrate meaningful use of the technology -- but initially, there were no definitions of the term, leaving many medical practitioners in a state of flux. In July, Sebelius unveiled final rules to support meaningful use, but questions remained.