Legislation from House Republicans to cut funding for numerous federal programs--including the electronic health records meaningful use incentive payments--is not going to become law, in the opinion of two health information technology policy professionals. But they have differing views on the long-term importance of the bill.

The legislation is H.R. 408, which seeks to cut $2.5 trillion in federal spending by 2011 (see story). While the bill would cut the $27 billion pegged for incentive payments, it would not repeal the HITECH Act or funds under the act that have been "obligated" to pay for state health information exchanges, regional extension centers, college-level health I.T. curricula and other initiatives, believes Dave Roberts, vice president of government relations at the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society.

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