“ONC did an excellent job of creating pragmatic, achievable guidelines for physicians while still maintaining an ambitious vision for health IT… Now that EHR systems are affordable and Meaningful Use is within grasp – doctors have absolutely no reason to stick with paper records.” – Ryan Howard, CEO of Practice Fusion
“We have revised the definition of meaningful use … and are requiring an overall lower bar and an approach that is more flexible.” – iHealthBeat
On Tuesday, the Department of Health and Human Services announced the release of the final rule establishing the incentive program guidelines for the meaningful use of electronic medical records.
Reactions to the final rule have been relatively positive as it appears that the 2,000+ comments submitted in response to the interim final rule were well received by those involved in the decision making process.
The following articles by various healthcare leaders and organizations provide a great summary and commentary on the final Meaningful Use guidelines:
- The New England Journal of Medicine article by David Blumenthal, M.D., M.P.P., and Marilyn Tavenner, R.N., M.H.A.: The “Meaningful Use” Regulations for Electronic Health Records. This article does a great job of explaining the importance of EHR adoption and how meaningful use relates to the EMR integration in healthcare. Additionally, the article includes an outline of core objectives as well as an explanation on the menu of options added to the final rule.
- iHealthBeat article: Final Rules on ‘Meaningful Use,’ EHR Standards Released Today. This article breaks down the final document into five key topics that one must know regarding the meaningful use standards. The article touches on high level topics and provides additional links to more details.
- Health Data Management article: A First Look at Final MU Criteria. This article provides a high level summary of the meaningful use changes from the previously proposed rule to the final rule, as well as a brief summary of next steps for healthcare providers as well as meaningful use’s own stage two.
- HealthImaging.com article: CMS, ONC release meaningful use final rules. This article includes a section on the core objectives of meaningful use as well as links to other external resources on the topic.
- Healthcare Standards blog post by Keith Boone (@motorcycle_guy): Meaningful Use Standards Summary. This blog post summarizes identifies 15 key points from the final rule on meaningful use and includes a table, organized by Don Sepulvada, Sr. Marketing Manager of GE Healthcare, on the stage one certification criteria and requirements for ambulatory and hospital EHR products.
- Life as a Healthcare CIO blog post by John D. Halamka, M.D., M.S.: A Do it Yourself Presentation on the Standards Rule and A Do it Yourself Presentation on the Meaningful Use Final Rule. These blog posts offer valuable presentation outlines on the standards and meaningful use rules that can be used for anyone communicating the new requirements to a larger audience, or simply looking to learn more on the new information.
- The Integration Generation blog post: Standards and Certification Criteria Final Rule – Healthcare Standards Overview. This blog references some supplementary materials provided by John D. Halamka, M.D. on the Meaningful Use and Standards rules. This post additionally includes a matrix of information breaking down the standards requirements into content and vocabulary categories.
As Brian Ahier noted on his recent blog post, defining moment for meaningful use, “we have reached a fulcrum point in the history of health care in our country.” The acceptance and support of meaningful use is instrumental to the future of the healthcare industry and subsequently, HITECH’s impact on the quality of healthcare in America will be no less than meaningful.
You can find a PDF of the Meaningful Use Final Rule here.
Are there any other articles or summaries that you have found to be particularly helpful?