Maria Montanaro from Woonsocket based Thundermist Community Health Center was up on Capitol Hill to talk to a Senate panel about the safety net and health information technology (HIT). Montanaro, the CEO, was invited by U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) to brief the Senate Steering Committee on Telehealth and Healthcare Informatics on her organization’s transition to electronic medical records. “I think there is something truly inspiring about a safety net provider who defies the status quo, even in the face of terrible financial disincentives, to invest in state-of-the-art technology to provide the highest-quality care for those who have fallen through the cracks,” said Whitehouse, an honorary co-chair of the steering committee. “And Thundermist was careful to create their new infrastructure the right way – in cooperation with larger statewide projects in health information technology, advancing the goal of a statewide health information data exchange system.” Despite the increased investment and dedication to HIT, adoption rates remain low among health centers, with only 8 percent reporting that they have adopted electronic medical records. An overwhelming majority of health center cite lack of capital as a major factor.