Kaiser pats itself on the back for Health IT platform

There are immense business and political benefits which flow from being seen as a leader in Health IT. The industry also needs success stories in order to resist calls for a "public option," health insurance run by the federal government in competition with the private sector.

Just a month after signing operations of its IT operations over to IBM, Kaiser is pausing to pat itself on the back.

Our Sam Diaz took a tour of the company's Innovation Center, where it showed off its skills in moving data, and its hopes for telepresence as a substitute for some doctor visits.

CEO George HalversonHalvorson, who took so many arrows in the back for the company's Epic deal early this decade, accepted the top award from the Workgroup for EDI.

The company also announced that 3 million people now use its Personal Health Record (PHR), over one third of its total service population of 8.6 million.

This is not coincidence. There are immense business and political benefits which flow from being seen as a leader in Health IT. The industry also needs success stories in order to resist calls for a "public option," health insurance run by the federal government in competition with the private sector.

Still, even its fiercest critics need to admit that Kaiser was early to the Health IT party and has earned the right to take a few bows.

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