Stimulus funds helped some stocks soar
Stimulus Package Helped Boost Value of Health IT Stocks by 82%
- 194% for Cerner;
- 134% for Allscripts Healthcare Solutions;
- 105% for Computer Programs and Systems;
- 105% for McKesson;
- 96% for Siemens;
- 89% for UnitedHealth Group;
- 83% for Accenture;
- 55% for athenahealth;
- 51% for Dell; and
- 34% for General Electric.
The current politicians’ need both better advisors and to make public servants actually responsible for their actions if they want to progress change. The political process is a short-term cycle and the objective seems to be simply to stay in power. We should accept this as a fact of how politics works. It is not as complicated as they would want us to believe. More time (and money it seems), is spent on spin doctoring rather than calling to account the people or organisations that money is provided to.
It is what happens next that really matters. We have all had experiences in our past that we would like to forget. While there are things that I should have said, I am sure there are things I should not have. Despite the frenetic pace that the eHealth agenda is facing and its potential derailment in many eyes, it is not too late to look at what can be achieved if we effectively work together to deliver the building blocks of eHealth. It is still possible if we harness the good will and the money that has been allocated to the eHealth agenda. Industry can help if they are helped. It has to be a constructive and effective action-generating outcomes. It is a hard task before us at best, so let us not make it harder than it already is. Simple, simple, simple steps is all that is needed. These steps will have lasting effects and stimulate innovation and creativity in the market place.
In conclusion: “Where is the rest of the $467 million that is not accounted for?” Any simple calculation of announced funding seems to have $10’s of millions, if not a lazy $100 million, unaccounted for. Why can’t that money be used to assist industry broadly to get the foundation pieces in place, like Health Identifiers, terminology and secure messaging across all sectors? This will deliver greater benefits and improve the effectiveness and efficiency in health and healthcare delivery than a Personally Controlled Electronic Health Record (PCEHR) system alone. Furthermore, it will enhance the PCEHRs that are already in existence and support the uptake of existing ones. This will be a lost opportunity if this money is not wisely spent with the broader industry to bring them to the table to deliver change. If we don’t engage the wider industry now, they will wander off and pursue things that really matter. eHealth dreams will be remembered as lost opportunities, good money after bad again, like the ghosts of eHealth past.
Dr Geoffrey Sayer
BSc(Psychol), MCH, PhD
Immediate Past President, MSIA