WHEREAS, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, healthcare expenditures in the United States totaled $1.7 trillion in 2003; and

WHEREAS, according to the New England Journal of Medicine, 31 cents of every healthcare dollar spent in the United States goes toward administrative costs and other expenses; and

WHEREAS, a 2005 study by the RAND Corporation estimates that the U.S. healthcare system could save $162 billion annually through the widespread use of healthcare information technology; and

WHEREAS, patient data is currently stored primarily in paper form and housed with individual providers, resulting in fragmentation of the healthcare industry; and

WHEREAS, individual providers have difficulty obtaining complete healthcare information in order to provide effective and beneficial treatment to their patients; and

WHEREAS, public health agencies are limited in their duties of disease surveillance, management and response capabilities by the current paper-based system for healthcare information storage and reporting; and

WHEREAS, there is a need to share healthcare information efficiently so that information is readily available to healthcare providers, consumers and public health agencies in order to make the best possible healthcare decisions; and

WHEREAS, healthcare information technology can improve patient safety and healthcare quality by reducing medical errors and adverse drug events through computerized physician order entry and E-prescribing and by facilitating better coordination of care through the availability of complete patient medical histories to multiple healthcare providers; and

WHEREAS, healthcare information technology can reduce healthcare costs through a reduction of duplicative medical tests, procedures and paperwork; and

WHEREAS, healthcare information technology has the potential to improve access to healthcare in underserved areas by supporting the advancement of telemedicine.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Matt Blunt, Governor of Missouri, by virtue and authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the state of Missouri, do hereby create and establish the Missouri Healthcare Information Technology Task Force.

The Task Force shall consist of fourteen (14) members appointed by the Governor. The Governor shall designate one (1) member to serve as Chair. All members shall serve at the pleasure of the Governor.

Members of the Task Force shall receive no compensation for their service to the people of Missouri.

The Task Force is assigned for administrative purposes to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. The Director of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services shall be available to assist the Task Force as necessary, and shall provide the Task Force with any staff assistance the Task Force may require from time to time.

The Task Force shall meet at the call of its Chair, and the Chair shall call the first meeting of the Task Force as soon as possible.

The Task Force shall evaluate and make initial recommendations to me by July 1, 2006 on the following topics:

  • Reviewing the current status of healthcare information technology adoption by the healthcare delivery system in Missouri;
  • Addressing potential technical, scientific, economic, security, privacy and other issues related to the adoption of interoperable healthcare information technology in Missouri;
  • Evaluating the cost of using interoperable healthcare information technology by the healthcare delivery system in Missouri;
  • Identifying private resources and public/private partnerships to fund efforts to adopt interoperable healthcare information technology;
  • Exploring the use of telemedicine as a vehicle to improve healthcare access to Missourians; and
  • Recommending best practices or policies for state government and private entities to promote the adoption of interoperable healthcare information technology by the Missouri healthcare delivery system.

The Task Force shall prepare a final report and submit it to me by September 1, 2006.

The Task Force shall expire on December 31, 2006.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused to be affixed the Great Seal of the State of Missouri, in the City of Jefferson, on this 17th day of January, 2006.

[Matt Blunt's signature]

Matt Blunt


[Robin Carnahan's signature]

Robin Carnahan
Secretary of State

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