Why the digital divide is likely to expand under ARRA

NRHA has long been concerned about the unintended effects of the HIT provisions of ARRA on rural providers. This editorial summarizes the issues and potential consequences of flawed public policy. Also, David Blumenthal, M.D., Director of the Office of the National Coordinator for HIT posted a blog entry in response to mounting criticism over the high expectations of reward from ARRA's investment in HIT states, "Information is the lifeblood of medicine.  HIT is its circulatory system.  A health care system without an electronic health information system simply cannot achieve its potential, anymore than an Olympic athlete could compete with a failing heart."