On Thursday, August 27, Dr. Farzad Mostashari of ONCHIT, hosted a web conference for over 1200 participants detailing a new grant program authorized by the HITECH Act. The Health Information Technology Extension Program consists of two parts, the National Health IT Research Center (HITRC) and then the Regional Extension Centers. The purpose of the Centers is to assist providers within their geographic areas on selection, acquisition, meaningful use, and implementation of EHRs and HIEs to improve health care quality and outcomes. Priority providers will be primary care.
The funding for the Extension Program is a four year project period with two budget periods. The total amount of funding available is $598 million for approximately 70 awards. Preliminary applications for the first of three funding cycles are due on September 8, 2009 and decisions to award will be December 11, 2009. Applicants must be a US-based nonprofit institution or organization.