CAHPS Health Information Technology Item Set
The CAHPS Health Information Technology (Health IT) Item Set is designed to help organizations assess the patient-centeredness of physician practices and medical groups that have adopted different kinds of information technologies. Increasingly common uses of health IT include secure electronic messaging, electronic medical records, medication lists, personal health records, and appointment scheduling.
These supplemental items focus on patients' experiences with health IT in a physician's office. They are designed to be administered as part of the Clinician & Group Survey, not on their own.
Why Assess Patient Experience with Health Information Technology?
While the use of health IT has the potential to improve some aspects of patients’ experiences, such as communication with providers and access to care, some studies have reported negative outcomes for patients, such as a depersonalization of the provider visit. Assessing the patients’ perspective through a survey offers a way to identify positive and negative effects and to ensure that practice administrators have a balanced view of the impact of new technologies.
Quality Measures From the Health Information Technology Item Set
Users of this item set can calculate and report three composite measures and one single item measure:
- Getting timely appointments through e-mail or a website (1 item only)
- Getting timely answers to medical questions by email
- Helpfulness of provider's use of computers during a visit
- Helpfulness of provider's website in giving you information about your care and tests
The remaining questions in the item set cannot be rolled up into composite measures.
1Rozenblum R, Donzé J, Hockey P, et al. The impact of medical informatics on patient satisfaction: A USA-based literature review. Int J Med Inform 2013 March;82(3):141-58.
Using Data from the Health Information Technology Item Set
Health care organizations can share results for the measures from this item set at the group, practice site, or provider level. Feedback of results at the item level can help providers better understand the behaviors and actions that can affect their patients’ experiences, such as
- Barriers to making appointments using health IT.
- Responsiveness to questions submitted electronically.
- The impact of computers or handheld devices used during the clinical encounter.
- How they provide information such as test results or visit notes using health IT.
The item set was originally released in the summer of 2011. An updated item set for the 3.0 version of the Clinician & Group Survey was released in the summer of 2017. Learn more about the development of the Health Information Technology Item Set.