Healthcare groups question pace of eHealth records rollout
Physicians want to be able to share patient data with other providers
Computerworld - Major physician and healthcare IT management groups are concerned about the U.S. government's timeline and process for rolling out the final phase of electronic health records (EHRs).
The American Medical Association (AMA) and the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) have both voiced concerns over "performance thresholds" or expectations for EHRs. The two groups want more flexibility in what are otherwise rigid standards.
The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has dispensed more than $7.7B in reimbursement payments to more than 307,000 healthcare professionals and 4,000 hospitals deploying EHRs under government guidelines.
The federal government requires healthcare facilities eventually to achieve three stages of meaningful use of EHRs over the next five years. To date, Stages 1 and 2 of meaningful use criteria have been defined by the U.S. Office of the National Coordinator of Health IT (ONC), meaning healthcare providers can be certified for compliance.
In November 2012, the HIT Policy Committee released draft recommendations and a Request for Comment for the Stage 3 criteria, which will go into effect in 2016.
Responding to the Request for Comment, CHIME urged the committee in a letter (download PDF) to recommend thorough evaluations of what has been accomplished so far before setting objectives for the nation's hospitals in Stage 3.
"We see no value in setting unrealistic performance thresholds or expectations before current evaluations of what we have accomplished have been undertaken," CHIME wrote. "Every desirable EHR-related objective cannot feasibly be met by 2016, nor do we see any value in attempting the rushed adoption of various EHR uses by that time. Instead, verifiable and continuous progress should be the goal."
Similarly, the AMA cautioned in its own letter (download PDF) that requiring hospitals and eligible healthcare professionals to achieve a 100% pass rate on meaningful use objectives "is not the right approach."
"The current and future meaningful use requirements are problematic, given that failing to meet just one measure by one percent would make a physician ineligible for incentives and subject to financial penalties," AMA CEO James Madara wrote. "The measures for use of EHRs should be made reasonable and achievable and still have a meaningful impact."
The AMA hammered out five points of contention with current proposed meaningful use criteria. In addition to the 100% pass rate requirements, the AMA said a single set of criteria does not fit all situations and program requirements should be appropriately flexible and better structured to accommodate practice patterns and specialties.
The group also complained that the evaluation process, essential to completing the program, is lacking. And it recommended that more attention be paid during the EHR certification process to address physician usability concerns.
Healthcare and IT
- HIPAA rules, outdated tech cost U.S. hospitals $8.3B a year
- How big data will save your life
- WebMD, Qualcomm build consumer cloud for mobile health data
- Lack of healthcare IT workers slows tech progress
- U.S. doctors don't believe patients need full access to health records
- Bill Clinton calls for healthcare price transparency, embracing IT to cut costs
- Physicians may be marginalized as mobile tech engages us in healthcare
- IBM: Watson will eventually fit on a smartphone, diagnose illness
- Hospitals need to copy airline, bank, retail e-business models
- Health providers can't find, keep IT staff
- The 20 Best iPhone/iPad Games of 2013 So Far
- 9 Steps to Build Your Personal Brand (and Your Career)
- 7 Consumer Technologies Coming to an Enterprise Near You
- 11 Signs Your IT Project is Doomed
- A walking tour: 33 questions to ask about your company's security
- 15 social media scams
- The 7 elements of a successful security awareness program
With the promise of big data (solving the unsolvable problems, informing better decision making, creating new products and services, discovering patterns and acting on them, etc.) on the horizon, what has really changed? Does this mean that everything we know and do with not-so-big data should be tossed?
- IT Certification Study Tips
- Register for this Computerworld Insider Study Tip guide and gain access to hundreds of premium content articles, cheat sheets, product reviews and more.
- Case Study: Hospital Turns to Email Archiving Solution to Ensure Regulatory Compliances
- Read this case study to learn how a cloud-based email archiving solution enabled the hospital to meet government mandates and helps avoid thousands...
- Case Study: In-the-Cloud Email Service Replaces Three Point Products
- Read this case study for more information on a comprehensive in-the-cloud email service to help replace three point products.
- Case Study: Simplifying the Transition to Exchange 2010 with Email Management Solutions
- Read this case study to learn how a cloud-based email management solution greatly simplified the company's transition to Exchange 2010.
- Intelligent Systems: A Prescription for Health Care Transformation
- Facing an onslaught of regulatory changes and market pressures, health care providers are grappling with how to transform existing services as part of...
- The Importance of Network Time Synchronization
- Your network is time stamping files, email, transactions, etc., while your server logs are recording the transactions in case you need that information.... All Healthcare IT White Papers
- Becoming An Analytics Driven Organization
- Join us on Tuesday, June 18, 2013, 11:00 AM EDT and learn how your agency can create an analytics culture that will enable...
- 3 Reasons Why Sepaton is the World's Fastest Backup Solution
- Leading analyst, Storage Switzerland learns how Sepaton backs up and deduplicates massive data volumes while maintaining the industry's fastest performance - all in...
- Enterprise File Sharing: All You Need to Know
- Security. Scalability. Control. These are just some of the many benefits of enterprise cloud file-sharing that you'll discover in this KnowledgeVault, packed with...
- Bridging HTTP and FTP with FileXpress Internet Server
- What if you could take an FTP server on your internal network, and allow external users (partners or customers) to securely access it...
- MFT and FileXpress - An Overview
- Business users and applications exchange files on a regular basis. File transfer is a core part of the flow of business activity. All Healthcare IT Webcasts