The ONC (short for the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology) in collaboration with the Content Management System just announced in a press conference that they have released the final draft for Stage 3 of the Meaningful use program. CMS and ONC issue new directives for EHR usage.
EHR or short for electronic health record refers to a system that is able to collect, analyze and systematize a collection of information regarding the state of health of an individual or of the general population. These information are compressed in a digital format and are shared through network connections.
Among the changes that were made in the program is that they including a 90-day reporting period. Furthermore, hospitals must now adjust their reporting period from the federal fiscal year to the calendar year.
Doctor Arnold Kriegstein, director of the Elie and Edythe Broad Center of Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research, said that she was pleased with the implementation of the 90-day reporting period for the hospitals, along with the resolutions of other concerns aroused by the American Heart Association. In the same interview, she stated that she is also displeased at the fact that CMS didn’t back up his proposal that 2018 should be the year in which Stage 3 will take effect.
The Health and Human Services department confirmed that Stage 3 of the project will eliminate some redundant aspects from Stage 2 and will provide more simpler and flexible set of regulation for Stage 2 beginning this year and ending in 2017.
Senators wrote that although most of the hospitals and the physicians meet the required certification for the implementation of the first stage of the meaningful use program, the requirements for stage 2 of the program are so elaborate and demanding that only 12% of the physicians and circa 40 percent of hospitals around the US that have been eligible to join the program chose to comply with it.
David Kibbe, M.D, notes that the EHR interface must operate some changes in order to align with the requirements for Stage 3 which are due to start in 2017. Kibbe said that all EHR interfaces must be equipped with and interoperable exchange technology that offers the encryption of outgoing data packages. This is to ensure all parties that all information are secured.
Also, CMS announced in a press conference that there will be a 60-day public comment period for the Stage 3 program in order to collect additional feedback about the program.
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