|SAN DIEGO -- Congressman Phil Gingrey, M.D. (R-Ga.) called on his fellow members of Congress to provide tax incentives for doctors who purchase electronic medical records for their practices during a speech today to more than 400 physicians during the 2006 Health Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) Conference in San Diego, California. The congressman addressed how Congress is working to provide tax incentives for physicians who implement electronic health records into their practices and hospital systems.
"The future of American healthcare will be determined in part by our adaptation of health information technology," said Gingrey. "Right now, the healthcare sector is woefully behind in using technology to reduce errors. I can go to Antarctica and get cash from an ATM without a glitch, but should I fall ill during my travels, a hospital there couldn't access my medical records or know what medications I take."
Congressman Gingrey introduced the ADOPT HIT Act, House Resolution 4641, in December 2005, which will provide tax incentives for physicians who implement healthcare technology in their practices. The legislation calls for an increase in the first year immediate equipment deduction from $100,000 to $250,000 and increases the maximum annual total of deductible property from $400,000 to $600,000 for health care professionals that purchase an EHR system.
"As a physician, I know many doctors want to utilize new technology, but find the costs prohibitive," Gingrey continued. "Doctors will be more likely to adopt this technology if our tax code helps offset the substantial initial cost. By passing the ADOPT HIT Act, we can help create a healthcare system that saves time, money, and most importantly, lives."
As one of the constituents in Gingrey's congressional district, Carrollton, Ga. - based Greenway Medical Technologies, a leading provider of EHR and physician practice management software solutions, is proud to work with the congressman and other members of both houses of the Congress in implementing electronic health records across the nation in a smart and calculated manner that will also recognize the efforts physicians across the country make in providing quality healthcare as well as operating the most important small business for each community that makes up this country.
"We are very proud and honored to have one of Georgia's congressional representatives take the leadership position in the House of Representatives on this very pivotal issue," said Justin Barnes, vice president of marketing and government affairs for Greenway Medical Technologies. "Congressman Gingrey knows that the backbone of small business America is the physician and he is ensuring that they will be able to move forward in this era of healthcare technology to provide more efficient healthcare and increase patient safety."
Congressman Gingrey has practiced medicine for over a quarter-century at Marietta OB-GYN Associates in Marietta, Ga. In 1998, Gingrey was elected to the Georgia State Senate for the first of two consecutive terms. Then, in 2002, he was elected U.S. congressman for Georgia's 11th District.
In the U.S. House of Representatives, Congressman Gingrey is working to improve healthcare for all Americans by studying and identifying the areas of the current healthcare delivery system that can help reduce costs, provide more efficient healthcare and increase patient safety such as measures including electronic health records (EHR) and other healthcare technology solutions.
Congressman Gingrey currently serves on the House Rules Committee. During his first term in Congress, he served on the House Armed Services Committee, the Committee on Education and the Workforce and the Science Committee.
In addition to his committee duties, Gingrey is Chairman of the Republican Healthcare Public Affairs Team and also chairs the Healthcare Reform Subcommittee of the Republican Policy Committee.