News | November 01, 2006

Homegrown EHRs Can Get Certified

The Certification Commission for Healthcare Information Technology is inviting organizations to submit their ambulatory electronic health-record products for possible certification during the next application period, running Nov. 1-14. The application period marks the launch of CCHIT certification of ambulatory EHRs internally developed by physician practices, hospitals and health systems.

The names of products receiving certification during this period are tentatively scheduled to be announced Feb. 1.

These systems will be evaluated using the same test script and functionality, security and interoperability criteria as commercial EHRs. To date, CCHIT has certified 35 ambulatory EHRs. While CCHIT posts the names of the certified products on its Web site, www.cchit.org, it doesn’t reveal the names of products that didn’t pass its inspection and failed to receive a 100% score on its 200-item test. Vendors must submit a $28,000 fee to have their products tested.

CCHIT was awarded a $2.7 million HHS contract last September to develop a sustainable process to certify health IT products first for the outpatient setting, and then for inpatient and hospital EHRs. CCHIT was created in 2004 by three Chicago-based organizations: the American Health Information Management Association, the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society and the National Alliance for Health Information Technology.

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