New Certification Criteria for APMs–Is This the Right Approach?

CMS and ONC are considering tying the new Alternative Payment Models (APM) being designed per the MACRA legislation to prescriptive criteria for “use” of certified EHR technology, and considering development of new certification criteria specifically created for APMs.  In doing so, do they risk going beyond congressional intent for the APM program and stifling innovation by imposing requirements on health IT beyond what is sought in the market, perhaps pursuing a strategy that may not be the best way to accomplish their end-goals – the rapid shift to value-based reimbursement and more integrated care?

Read “Health IT, Value-Based Payment, and Innovation: Let’s Get it Right” by Mark Segal, PhD (EHRA Chair Emeritus and Vice President of Government and Industry Affairs for GE Healthcare IT) on the GE blog page.

When Health IT is Personal

Leigh Burchell, EHRA Chair and VP for Policy and Government Affairs for Allscripts, recently wrote about her own experience with health IT and how that has broadened her perspectives as both vendor and patient.  An excerpt:

“Recently…health IT has been personalized for me in an entirely different way, and I understand it from a new perspective. Thankfully, unlike many people who speak about the challenges they’re still encountering, my experience has largely been positive since becoming a breast cancer patient.”

Read the full post, “When health IT became personal: My journey with breast cancer” on the Allscripts blog.

 

 

 

Privacy and Security, and Building Patient Trust

Earlier this year, ONC published an updated “Guide to Privacy and Security of Electronic Health Information” to help healthcare providers and ambulatory practices understand existing federal law on protected health information (PHI).  It provides guidance on how providers can use certified electronic medical record technology (CEHRT) to provide secure communications with their patients and, via secure and interoperable health IT, share patient data with other care providers.

There is a great deal of practical information provided in this guide that helps explain who is and who is not a business associate (BA), per the HIPAA regulations.   It also provides clear guidance as to when it is permissible to disclose PHI, when patient authorizations are required, and how to provide patient access to their health information.  In addition, there is a useful section on general cybersecurity explaining the threat of cyber-attacks, the use of mobile devices, and email and texting among providers and their patients.

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Looking Back at 2014 and Forward to 2015

(January 2015)   As 2015 begins, the EHRA leadership has taken some time to put together what we see as the major achievements for our association in 2014, in the context of the challenges we and our customers have faced.

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