Patient Engagement Functionalities in U.S. Hospitals: Is Early Adoption Associated with Financial Performance?

Academic Article


  • U.S. hospitals are in various stages in their adoption of health information technology (HIT) with patient engagement functionalities. The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act of 2009 allocated $30 billion to incentivize the adoption and use of HIT. This study aims to identify hospital characteristics of early patient engagement functionality adoption and compare the financial performance of groups of hospitals that offer these functionalities according to Rogers' adopter categories. The combined data from the American Hospital Association Annual Survey and Information Technology Supplement, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid cost reports, and Health Resources & Services Administration Area Health Resource Files from 2008 to 2013 yielded a sample of 696 unique acute care hospitals. Three adopter categories - early adopters, early majority, and late majority - were created. Generalized estimating equations were used to examine the financial performance (operating margin, return on assets, total margin, operating expenses, revenue per inpatient day) across the adopter types. Compared to early adopter hospitals, operating margins were lower for early majority hospitals (β = -.407, p <.05) and late majority hospitals (β = -.608, p <.05). Moreover, compared to early adopter hospitals, late majority hospitals exhibited significantly lower operating revenue (β = -.087, p <.01) and operating expenses (β = -.064, p <.01) per inpatient day. No significant relationships were observed when comparing these groups based on total margin and return on assets. Hospital administrators should consider the positive financial outcomes associated with early adoption of patient engagement functionalities in the decision-making process.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 26126966
  • Author List

  • Asagbra OE; Zengul FD; Burke D
  • Start Page

  • 381
  • End Page

  • 396
  • Volume

  • 64
  • Issue

  • 6