Numerous studies have demonstrated the advantages of electronic health records (EHRs) over paper records, including increased quality of patient care. Despite these studies, many physicians have been reluctant to make the necessary capital investments in EHRs for a number of reasons, including cost. To help overcome some of these hurdles, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) created a program designed to encourage physicians to purchase and use EHR programs. The final regulations for the program were issued on July 13, 2010.
The ACC has developed the following analysis that focuses on the requirements for physicians who primarily practice in an outpatient setting: