The federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality is providing $5 million to fund two studies of best practices for using clinical decision support software, a tool long-held by insurers as a means to better diagnosis, treatment and, as a result, lower claims.

AHRQ is an agency of the Department of Health and Human Services. The contracts went to Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, and Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn.

The organizations will implement clinical decision support with widely used health care information technology, demonstrate cross-platform utility and identify lessons learned for decision support implementation across the health IT vendor community.

The research, in a variety of clinical settings, will focus on treatment of patients with multiple chronic conditions. It will assess potential benefits and drawbacks of decision support in such areas as patient satisfaction, efficiency, cost and risk. More information is available at http://healthit.ahrq.gov.

Portions of this article originally appeared in Health Data Management, another SourceMedia publication.

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