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APHA Scientific Session and Event Listing

“Health Information Technology for dummies: The “how to” of what I wish I had known before implementing HIT in a rural region”

Kiki C. Nocella, PhD MHA, Department of Family Medicine, University of Southern California, 1420 San Pablo Street, PMB B205, Los Angeles, CA 90033, 323 442 1676, nocella@usc.edu


In 2004, Tehachapi Valley Healthcare District was the recipient of AHRQ HIT funding to address chronic disease in an 8,000 square mile desolate region of California. The principles and recommendations of the Institute of Medicine provided the foundation for this initiative, resulting in a community driven, comprehensive, and innovative approach using practical HIT applications to achieve the five strategies described in “Quality through Collaboration: The Future of Rural Health”, those being: 1) addressing personal and population health needs, 2) establishing quality improvement support structures, 3) enhancing human resource capacity, 4) assuring systems are financially stable, and 5) investing in technology infrastructure.

Much is currently being discussed about the need for HIT to address quality. This session will provide the insights and tools of how to move from talking about it, to actually doing it, specifically in a rural region. Process, funding, challenges, IT and infrastructure solutions and strategies for addressing challenges will be addressed. Information and findings on implementing telemedicine, personal health records, EHRs and Community Health Information Exchange amongst 11 physicians, three rural health clinics, and a critical access hospital will be shared.


Retrospective case study, community based action research

Results and Conclusion:

Significant focus of the presentation will be placed on process – the people part of the equation. Preliminary data on quality and access outcomes will be shared as a result of this project.

Learning Objectives:

  • Upon completing this session, participants will be able to

    Keywords: Quality, Rural Health Care

    Presenting author's disclosure statement:

    Any relevant financial relationships? No

    Technology Adoption and Health Administration

    The 134th Annual Meeting & Exposition (November 4-8, 2006) of APHA