Loan Fund To Assist Development of EHR in Economically Distressed Areas

The North Carolina Health and Wellness Trust Fund (HWTF) announced Monday the creation of the North Carolina Electronic Health Record (EHR) Loan Fund Pilot Program. The pilot will provide financial assistance to physicians and health care professionals in Tier 1 counties seeking to create or upgrade EHR systems required for Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements beginning in 2015.

A grant of $127,461 was awarded to the North Carolina Medical Society Foundation to provide technical assistance for and evaluation of the EHR loan fund pilot program over a five-year period beginning July 1, 2010. The Center for Community Self-Help (Self-Help), a Durham-based nonprofit, will manage the $750,000 loan fund and underwrite prospective borrowers. Self-Help will work in partnership with the North Carolina Medical Society Foundation and the North Carolina Area Health Education Centers to identify eligible providers and help them transition to advanced EHR systems.

The revolving loan fund is designed as a pilot program to expend its initial capital within the first year of operation. Individual loans are expected to range in size from $40,000 to $60,000 and may be used to:

  • Purchase a certified EHR technology or upgrade an existing EHR to meet certification criteria;
  • Train personnel in the use of such technology; and/or
  • Improve the secure electronic exchange of health information.

Loans will vary in pricing based on the borrower’s credit/collateral profile and will feature flexible repayment terms to better serve the needs of a wider variety of practices.

Click here to read the complete press release on the NC HWTF announcement.


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