News Feature | August 1, 2014

Healthcare IT News For VARs — August 1, 2014

By Megan Williams, contributing writer

Healthcare IT News For VARs

In the news, EHR vendors and the American Medical Association say EHR systems certified for Stage 2 Meaningful Use are frequently found not to be interoperable. Also, telemedicine is being proposed for VA hospitals, and some non-HIPAA-covered entities are adopting ICD-10, even though they are not required to do so.

EHR Vendors And AMA Say Some MU Certified Systems Not Interoperable

IT vendors and healthcare industry representatives are saying that EHR systems certified for Meaningful Use Stage 2 are frequently incapable of exchanging patient health information with other systems. Vendors broke this news to the Health IT Standards Committee’s implementation workgroup on July 28, saying that many templates contain coding errors and variations. Vendors did not agree on the extent to which the issues were impeding flow but some examples were serious, according to Bloomberg BNA.

House Committee Considers Interoperable Data Registries

The House Committee On Energy And Commerce is considering a bill that would require the Department Of Health And Human services to recommend a strategy for the development and use of clinical data registries with the aim of improving patient care. The proposed legislation (HR 5214) was first revealed on Monday, according to EHR Intelligence. The bill details five areas of recommendations that HHS would be required to investigate.

Telemedicine At The Center Of VA Reform

Telemedicine specifically is called out as a potential solution for the VA’s recent problems, in the $17 billion Veterans Affairs bill currently moving through Congress. The bipartisan legislation is expected to pass on July 31, with Senate passage anticipated August 1. The 132-page bill requires the VA to expand telemedicine through movable veterans’ centers and mobile medical units. The technology is already in use in all VA hospitals across the country, with positive outcomes being reported. Read more at Politico.  

Non-Covered Entities Adopting ICD-10 Coding

According to a Q&A article from Government Health IT, non-HIPAA covered entities are planning on adopting ICD-10 coding, despite the fact that they don’t have to. The interview with Michele Hibbert, VP of information management support at Mitchell international, reveals that major casualty insurers are finding benefits in implementing the coding system to stay coordinated with entities that are required to. The cross coverage between health, casualty, and property insurance has created a need where uniform coding eases communication and provides for better patient care.  

Healthcare IT Talking Points

This article from EHR Intelligence discusses how best practices in pediatric preventive care can become actionable in an electronic environment, through a study by researchers from the Indiana University School of Medicine and the Regenstrief Institute In Applied Clinical Informatics. The study assesses the feasibility of reproducing the American Academy Of Pediatrics’ Bright Futures guidelines in the form of clinical decision support in a physician EHR system.

For more news and insights, visit BSMinfo’s Healthcare IT Resource Center.