AHRQ Sees Budget Cuts, but Agency Remains in Place | Healthcare Informatics Magazine | Health IT | Information Technology Skip to content Skip to navigation

AHRQ Sees Budget Cuts, but Agency Remains in Place

December 17, 2015
by Rajiv Leventhal
| Reprints

The House Appropriations Committee has cut funding for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) in its final fiscal year 2016 omnibus bill, but the research agency will not be terminated after all.

In June, the House Appropriations Committee voted in favor of a bill that would eliminate the Department of Health & Human Services’ (HHS) AHRQ all together, a research agency that has long been disliked by some members of Congress who feel that the organization's work has not led to proven results. However, the White House had asked for funding of the AHRQ, which has areas devoted to health IT research, to remain static. Now, in its FY16 final omnibus bill, the House Appropriations Committee has provided AHRQ with $334 million in budget authority in FY16, down from $364 million in FY15, or a cut of about 8 percent.

In the letters to Congress in October, several healthcare organizations—including the Chicago-based Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS)— said that “deep cuts to AHRQ in the current fiscal environment are pennywise and pound foolish.” The organizations wrote, “As you work to enact final spending legislation for fiscal year (FY) 2016, we hope Congress will work together to enact sequestration relief and restore AHRQ’s budget authority to $364 million.”

While the agency’s budget did get cut by 8 percent, the effort of the healthcare stakeholders could have prevented AHRQ from being terminated outright. According to the bill, “the agreement expects AHRQ to focus its research on its traditional mission, such as improving patient safety and preventing healthcare associated infections.”

Get the latest information on Health IT and attend other valuable sessions at this two-day Summit providing healthcare leaders with educational content, insightful debate and dialogue on the future of healthcare and technology.

Learn More

Topics

News

Advocate Aurora Health, Foxconn Plan Employee Wellness, “Smart City,” and Precision Medicine Collaboration

Wisconsin-based Advocate Aurora Health is partnering with Foxconn Health Technology Business Group, a Taiwanese company, to develop new technology-driven healthcare services and tools.

Healthcare Data Breach Costs Remain Highest at $408 Per Record

The cost of a data breach for healthcare organizations continues to rise, from $380 per record last year to $408 per record this year, as the healthcare industry also continues to incur the highest cost for data breaches compared to any other industry, according to a new study from IBM Security and the Ponemon Institute.

Morris Leaves ONC to Lead VA Office of Electronic Health Record Modernization

Genevieve Morris, who has been detailed to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) from her position as the principal deputy national coordinator for the Department of Health and Human Services, will move over full time to lead the newly establishment VA Office of Electronic Health Record Modernization.

Cedars-Sinai Accelerator Program Presents Fourth Class of Startups

The Cedars-Sinai Accelerator, a program that helps entrepreneurs bring their innovative technology products to market, has brought in nine more health tech startups as part of its fourth class.

DirectTrust Adds Five Board Members

DirectTrust, a nonprofit organization that support health information exchange, announced the appointment of five new executives to its board of directors.

Analysis: Many States Continue to Have Restrictive Telemedicine Policies

State Medicaid programs are evolving to accelerate the adoption of telemedicine models, this evolution is occurring more quickly in some states than others, according to a recent analysis by Manatt Health.