The term “meaningful use” refers to a specific program that would seek to lower health care costs by upgrading technology and using electronic records to provide more thorough care by providing better access to patient information. The standards are defined through the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Kiteck said that doctors like himself are already required to have electronic prescribing capabilities this year, but by the start of 2014, they will also need to be keeping all their records electronically.
Those more favorable to Obamacare have taken the opportunity to criticize Kiteck for his position. An article on the website Daily Kos (m.dailykos.com), started with the line, “The far right is thrilled with this Kentucky doctor crying ‘Get off my lawn!’” and picked up on a quote by Kiteck saying that his office was “computer illiterate,” saying, “Sounds like Kiteck's patients might be dodging a bullet. After all, who would really want a computer illiterate doctor in 2013? Does he know about the Internet?”
Kiteck took the criticism in stride, saying, “It was blown out of proportion, and I understand that. I don’t claim to be a computer expert by any means. I go to my kids every time I have problems with my computer.”
Despite Kiteck’s admitted unfamiliarity with computer systems, his patients aren’t happy to be losing him.
“It’s very sad, a very difficult decision,” said Kiteck. “Some patients are very upset. It’s very difficult for myself and my staff, but even more so for my loyal patients, some of whom have seen me for 20 years.”
Kiteck have been in independent practice for the last two decades. Before that, he worked with the Family Practice Clinic, from 1978 to 1992.
“I’ve had a lot of very strong comments (made about the decision to close),” he said of his patients, noting that the “negative” comments were never directed at him but at the conditions which have forced his decision. “They’re upset that I’m retiring. I have patients in London, Lexington and Tennessee. The trouble is, I have to call these people and let them know about it because they might not see the newspaper.”