Hospitals in the US will spend more than $14bn on acquiring IT systems in the next five years funded in part by the recent American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) said.

By tracking 5,000 hospitals, HIMSS also forecast that the spend on systems such as electronic medical records, computerised practitioner order entry and clinical decision support tools is expected to hit $1.7bn in 2009.

But any spend will be against a backdrop of a constrained funding environment in the near-term, researchers said.