Health IT agency getting axed

The quasi-public agency set up to promote the use and sharing of electronic medical records is being eliminated as part of budget implementation legislation that’s expected to pass the General Assembly Wednesday.

The Health Information Technology Exchange of Connecticut was created in 2010 to promote the use of electronic medical records. Officials had also hoped it would help create a network that health care providers could use to share patients’ medical records electronically.

But the agency, HITE-CT, fell short of the initial expectations and its funding, from a federal grant, ran out.

Karen Buffkin, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy's deputy budget director, said the market for health information technology has changed and many of the functions HITE-CT was originally expected to do have been undertaken by the private sector.

“They have been winding down,” she said.

Some of HITE-CT’s functions, including updating the statewide health information technology plan, will be transferred to the Department of Social Services.

About Arielle Levin Becker

Arielle Levin Becker was a finalist in 2009 for the prestigious Livingston Award for Young Journalists, a recipient of a Knight Science Journalism Fellowship and the third-place winner in 2013 for an in-depth piece on home caretakers from the National Association of Health Journalists. Arielle previously worked for The Hartford Courant, most recently as its health reporter. She also has covered education and municipal beats for The Courant and for the Home News Tribune of East Brunswick, N.J. She is a 2004 graduate of Yale University. E-mail her at alevinbecker@ctmirror.org.

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