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David Shulkin, MD, secretary of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, asked a House committee to redirect $782 million of his agency’s budget to begin the switch from the VA’s legacy electronic health record system to a new Cerner platform.

Like most healthcare conventions this year, the 2017 meeting of the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) featured plenty of talk about healthcare policy coming out of Washington, D.C. With much of the attention taken up by the Affordable Care Act’s future, AHIMA’s leaders were considering the future of a different law: Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).

All of Us, the precision medicine research program run by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), will utilize data from the popular consumer wearable Fitbit, with 10,000 of the devices being provided to volunteers for one year.

A newly unsealed lawsuit claims billing software made by Epic Systems has caused hundreds of hospitals to double-bill Medicaid and Medicare for anesthesia services which could have resulted in hundreds of millions of dollars in improper claims to CMS.

CMS quality programs will require the use of a new health IT standard, called Clinical Quality Language (CQL), in the 2019 care year to “better express logic defining measure populations to improve the accuracy and clarity” of electronic clinical quality measures (eCQMs).

 

Recent Headlines

CMS says first test of ICD-10 claim acceptance is a success

According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), it was able to accept nearly all of the more than 127,000 ICD-10 test claims submitted by approximately 2,600 providers, suppliers, billing companies and claims clearinghouses who participated in its test in early March.

CMS and ONC propose extension to Meaningful Use Stage 2

With only a fraction of hospitals and eligible professionals being ready to report for the Medicare and Medicaid electronic health record (EHR) incentive programs using the 2014 certified EHR technology criteria (aka, Meaningful Use Stage 2), the administration has issued a proposed policy to allow reporting using Stage 1 criteria for one more year.

ANSI wins second term as ONC-approved accreditor

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) has selected the non-profit American National Standards Institute (ANSI) for a second three-year term as the ONC-Approved Accreditor (ONC-AA) for the ONC Health Information Technology (HIT) Certification Program.

Criticism of EHR incentive program grows

Meaningful Use bashing is no longer just for the healthcare providers and electronic health record (EHR) system developers. Experts who’ve been involved in the creation of the government’s EHR adoption incentive program and other industry watchers are now also calling for changes.

6 steps the government needs to take to advance telehealth

The Washington, D.C.-based think tank the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation issued a report this week that highlighted important regulatory and policy changes that need to be made to fully realize the potential cost savings of telehealth services.

New York Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center pay largest ever HIPAA settlement

A user error that made the personal health information of 6,800 Columbia University Medical Center patients accessible on internet search engines will cost the hospital and its partner Columbia University Medical Center $4.8 million.

New York Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center pay largest ever HIPAA settlement

A user error that made the personal health information of 6,800 Columbia University Medical Center patients accessible on internet search engines will cost the hospital and its partner Columbia University Medical Center $4.8 million.

ONC touts progress on EHR adoption but Stage 2 meaningful use achievement is low

A May report from the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) shows significant progress in hospitals adopting at least a basic electronic health record (EHR) system. However, the same week the report was released, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) officials revealed that, so far this year, only four hospitals have met Stage 2 meaningful use requirements.

House approves VA and Defense budget bill with HIT interoperability requirement

In what may be a signal of how serious legislators are about the need for health information technology (HIT) developers to advance interoperability in EHR systems at a faster pace, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved a Veterans’ Affairs (VA) and Defense Department appropriations bill that holds back HIT funding until progress on EHR interoperability is demonstrated.

Will new deadline set for ICD-10 stick?

The changeover to the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision, (ICD-10) coding set has a new deadline, but after several such delays, uncertainty continues about the permanence of this deadline.

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