NORC at the University of Chicago (NORC) is pleased to present this site visit report describing methods, key findings and conclusions from Oregon for “Community Health Center Information Systems Assessment: Issues and Opportunities.” This project is sponsored by the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and will assess the status of health information systems (IS) at the nation’s HHS-funded consolidated health centers (hereafter referred to as “consolidated health centers”). Results from this study will help guide a range of HHS projects focused on infrastructure at consolidated health centers and, more broadly, HHS policy relating to the United States health care safety net. The study will also help identify research and development priorities as they relate to consolidated health center use of IS. The project involves collection and analysis of information on the characteristics of systems applications and technical infrastructure currently in place at consolidated health centers. Findings from the project will focus on unmet IS related needs and models for successful use of IS within consolidated health centers and the communities they serve.
Site visits to seven communities with consolidated health centers around the country form the major data gathering activity of the assessment. Additional assessment activities include a comprehensive environmental scan summarizing findings from available published and unpublished sources on issues related to consolidated health center use of IS, discussions with a series of 15 experts (or “thought leaders”) with experience in the financing, development, support or design of health center IS and structured interviews with a set of 25 consolidated health centers across the United States.