30 Sep ONC clarifies ‘meaningful use’ certification rules
AuntMinnie.com | September 30 – “Meaningful use” has become the holy grail of healthcare IT – the standard that providers must achieve to receive stimulus funds. U.S. regulators recently issued final rules that define how they view meaningful use, but the guidelines raise almost as many questions as they answer.
Issued in July by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC), the final rule covers certification of electronic health record (EHR) products to be used to achieve the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) meaningful use requirements. But questions have been flying fast and furious with respect to how certification will be achieved in the real world.
CMS has said it will open the registration process to apply for meaningful use funding in January 2011. The testing and certification of complete EHR systems by this date may be achievable, due to the limited number of soup-to-nuts EHR systems commercially available. However, there are hundreds of healthcare IT products that qualify as EHR modules, including RIS and PACS applications. These also perform “meaningful use” functions for the healthcare providers who’ve already gone digital and utilize electronic health management technology. All need to be tested.
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