Meaningful use — a concept introduced only a year ago — appears to be spurring an increase in healthcare information-technology (IT) spending, along with a brightening economy, suggests results of the 21st annual Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) leadership survey. The American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) promises financial incentives to providers and hospitals for the “meaningful use” of certified healthcare IT products. Although criteria for meaningful use will not be established until later this year, 59 percent of the 398 respondents to this year's survey said they plan to make additional investments to position themselves to qualify for the incentives.

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