National Coordinator for Health IT David Blumenthal recently posted an update letter reviewing key health IT-related programs and policies that have been established over the past year, CMIO reports.
Blumenthal wrote that this year's accomplishments have helped "lay the foundation for [health care] providers to begin their journey toward meaningful use." Under the 2009 economic stimulus package, health care providers who demonstrate meaningful use of certified electronic health records can qualify for incentive payments through Medicaid and Medicare.
Some of the recent health IT projects described in the update include the creation of:
- A final rule on the meaningful use of EHRs, which CMS released in July to provide hospitals and health care providers with guidance on how to qualify for federal incentive payments;
- A final rule on EHR standards and certification criteria, which describes the functionalities that EHRs must include to support the meaningful use requirements;
- A temporary EHR certification program, which authorizes organizations to test and certify EHR products under Stage 1 criteria for meaningful use; and
- A certified health IT product list, which identifies EHRs that have been tested and certified as meeting Stage 1 criteria for meaningful use (CMIO, 12/13).
On Tuesday and Wednesday, ONC is scheduled to hold a webinar to provide updates on current health IT initiatives and future activities.
Blumenthal said the webinar aims to help participants better understand the HITECH Act and the role it will play during the implementation of the federal health reform law.
Details of the webinar are available on ONC's website (Goedert, Health Data Management, 12/13).