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Difference Between the HITECH Act and the American Recovery

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Introduction

Despite having been instituted in the same year (2009), a close examination of the HITECH and the Recovery and Reinvestment Act reveals significant differences. One of these differences relates to their meaningful uses. The HITECH Act was meant to be applied in healthcare based on interoperable EHR promotion as a vital national objective (Chodorow-Reich et al., 2012). As such, its meaningful use is not only based on adoption but also leans on the necessity to apply EHR in reliable, sustainable, and meaningful ways. The objective of meaningful use as relates to the HITECH Act is therefore based on its significance in helping providers attain service enhancements (Stark, 2010). On the other hand, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 was designed to be used as a pecuniary stimulus (Stark, 2010). As such, its meaningful use draws from its capacity to speed up and help attain economic recovery in cases of economic downturns (Chodorow-Reich et al., 2012). Unlike the HITECH Act that works through EHRs, this particular act works through fiscal allocations towards education and areas like social welfare.

Another significant difference draws from the components attached to each act. The ARRA emphasizes social well-being, which explains why it encapsulates a component that allows its implementation to provide speedy relief to families. Notably, the funds received by families based on this component are evidenced by reductions in taxation, declines in tax credits, and benefits for the unemployed (Chodorow-Reich et al., 2012). On the contrary, the HITECH Act has a component that is quite different. This particular act emphasizes on Health Information Exchange, which was established to serve the purpose of attracting stimulus funding. Further, this component was instituted to foster electronic sharing of information in the health sector in making prescriptions using EHR (Stark, 2010).

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1. Chodorow-Reich, G., Feiveson, L., Liscow, Z., & Woolston, W. G. (2012). Does state fiscal relief during recessions increase employment? Evidence from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 4(3), 118-45.

2. Stark, P. (2010). Congressional intent for the HITECH Act. The American journal of managed care, 16(12 Suppl HIT), SP24-8.

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