News | June 16, 2009

HHS Begins Process to Define "Meaningful Use," Public Comment-Period Called

June 16, 2009 - While the healthcare community awaited the first "Meaningful Use" definition due today, healthcare stakeholders struggled to define one of the key medical terms for the ARRA.

The Health Information Technology (HIT) Policy Committee, a Federal Advisory Committee (FACA) to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), met today to begin the process of defining “meaningful use” of electronic health records (EHRs). This meeting is a first step for the department, as it investigates possible definitions for meaningful use.

“We are moving fast to achieve the President’s goal to improve the health and well-being of every American through the on-going use of health information technology,” stated HHS’ National Coordinator for Health Information Technology David Blumenthal, M.D., M.P.P. “The work of the policy committee is a first step toward assuring that technology - the electronic health record - is used in a meaningful way to provide better patient care.”

Meanwhile, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) sent out a notice that it is seeking comments on the preliminary definition of “Meaningful Use,” as presented to the HIT Policy Committee on June 16, 2009.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (the “Recovery Act”) (Pub. L. 111-5) provides for Medicare and Medicaid incentive payments for eligible providers, such as physicians and hospitals, in order to promote the adoption of EHRs. To receive the incentive payments, providers must demonstrate “meaningful use” of a certified EHR. Building upon the work of the HIT Policy Committee, HHS anticipates developing a proposed rule that provides greater detail on the incentive programs and “meaningful use.” HHS expects to issue the proposed rule in late 2009, which will be followed by a comment period.

Comments on the draft description of “Meaningful Use” are due no later than 5 p.m./Eastern Time on June 26, 2009, and should be no more than 1,000 words in length.

The "Summary of Key Health Information Technology Provisions," issued March 6, 2009, stated the following about "meaningful use":
A meaningful user is an eligible professional (physician) that:
1) Demonstrates to the satisfaction of the Secretary that during such period the professional is using certified EHR technology in a meaningful manner, which shall include the use of electronic prescribing as determined to be appropriate by the Secretary;
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
2) Demonstrates to the satisfaction of the Secretary that during such period such certified EHR technology is connected in a manner that provides, in accordance with law and standards applicable to the exchange of information, for the electronic exchange of health information to improve the quality of health care, such as promoting care coordination; and
3) Submits information for such period, in a form and manner specified by the Secretary, on such clinical quality measures and such other measures as selected by the Secretary.

Electronic responses to the request for comments on the draft description of Meaningful Use are preferred and should be addressed to: [email protected], subject line “Meaningful Use.”

Written comments may also be submitted to the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, 200 Independence Ave, SW, Suite 729D, Washington, DC 20201. Attention: HIT Policy Committee Meaningful Use Comments.

For additional information, including any requests for a hard copy (or faxed copy) of the draft description of Meaningful Use, call or email Judith Sparrow, 202-205-4528, [email protected]

Related Content

Logicalis Healthcare Solutions, Epic service desk, HIMSS17
News | Electronic Medical Records (EMR)| March 06, 2017
March 6, 2017 — Logicalis Healthcare Solutions announced in February a new service desk offering – Service Desk for E
HIMSS Leadership and Workforce Survey, HIMSS17, electronic medical records, EMR, health information technology
News | Electronic Medical Records (EMR)| February 21, 2017
A new study from the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS), unveiled at the 2017 HIMSS...
ECG, heartbeat, password access, electronic health records, Binghamton University SUNY study, Zhanpeng Jin
News | Electronic Medical Records (EMR)| January 26, 2017
Researchers at Binghamton University, State University of New York have devised a new way to protect personal...
AMA, American Medical Association study, EMRs, electronic medical records, physician burnout
News | Electronic Medical Records (EMR)| September 07, 2016
Technological and administrative obstacles are significantly cutting into available time for physicians to engage with...
IBISWorld, electronic medical records, EMR software, price, market report

Image courtesy of IBISWorld

News | Electronic Medical Records (EMR)| June 07, 2016
According to market research firm IBISWorld, the average price of electronic medical record (EMR) software is forecast...
ONC, survey, electronic health records, adoption, 2015
News | Electronic Medical Records (EMR)| June 03, 2016
According to data from a new survey, nearly all of the nation’s hospitals have adopted certified electronic health...
CMS, Meaningful Use replacement, Meaningful Outcomes, JPM16
News | Electronic Medical Records (EMR)| January 15, 2016
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced Monday that it will be ending the Meaningful Use program...
Overlay Init