The federal government continued to implement the HITECH Act, enacted as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, during the third quarter of 2014. As implementation of HITECH's programs begin to wind down, more than $25 billion in incentive payments have been made to providers to spur electronic health record adoption, and more than 90% of eligible hospitals and 75% eligible professionals have adopted and are using EHRs as a result.
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT clarified that Karen DeSalvo will be "maintaining her leadership of" the agency while she serves as acting HHS assistant secretary for health, Modern Healthcare's "Vital Signs" reports (Conn, "Vital Signs," Modern Healthcare, 10/28).
The initial misdiagnosis of the first Ebola-infected patient in the U.S.
A coalition of health care organizations sent a letter to HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell recommending that the agency overhaul the meaningful use program with a focus on interoperability, Healthcare IT News reports.
CMS announced that about 44,000 health care providers submitted hardship exemption applications for the meaningful use program before the July 1 deadline, Bloomberg BNA reports (Ruoff, Bloomberg BNA, 9/30).
ONC proposed a “safety-enhanced design” (SED) certification criterion for the Proposed Voluntary Edition that was unchanged as compared to the 2014 Edition certification criterion.
ONC did, however, solicit public comment regarding whether ONC should modify the certification criterion. Specifically, ONC requested comment regarding whether:
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) invites you to register for the 2014 Annual Consumer Health IT Summit on September 15th in Washington DC. This exciting day-long event highlights public and private sector efforts to advance patient engagement by empowering people with their digital health data and technology. To register and get additional logistical details, visit http://www.capconcorp.com/meeting/2014/Consumer-Health-IT-Summit/default....
Medical experts told members of Congress that health IT solutions, such as electronic health records, are falling short in efforts to improve patient safety, Healthcare IT News reports (McCann, Healthcare IT News, 7/18).
The HIMSS EHR Association in a letter urged the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT and CMS to quickly issue a final rule regarding 2014 meaningful use reporting requirements and to delay the start of Stage 3 until at least 2018, Healthcare IT News reports (Monegain, Healthcare IT News, 7/11).
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