Legislation that was recently introduced by the House of Representatives would provide loans for eligible health care professionals, including PTs, to purchase health information technology (HIT). The program would be tailored to meet the unique challenges that small health care providers face in adopting HIT, including cost, flexibility, interconnectedness, and interoperability, says the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA), Alexandria, Va.
Under the Small Business Health Information Technology Financing Act (HR 3014), introduced by Rep Kathy Dahlkemper (D-Pa), an individual qualified eligible professional could receive $350,000, and a single group of affiliated qualified eligible professionals could receive $2 million, says APTA.
The HIT loan program would rely on private-sector lenders to provide loans that are guaranteed by the Small Business Administration. The proceeds from a HIT loan may be used for qualifying HIT purposes, such as the acquisition, maintenance, or training for HIT systems and equipment according to APTA. The loans would carry benefits to help small health practices overcome the financial barriers to HIT adoption with financing that is structured to complement the purpose of the loan proceeds and the useful life of the HIT assets being financed, says APTA.