ONC: “Meaningful use” for HIT will evolve

 A panel deciding what kind of computerized health information systems will get stimulus money was sent back to do some more homework yesterday, according to Healthcare IT News.

 Companies that make these systems and providers who use them have been waiting for a definition of the “meaningful use” requirement  so they canplan to  get in on the $20 billion in stimulus money set aside for HIT. Looks like they may have to wait a while for a precise RFP-type definition. This HIT News story was entitled “ONC goes back to the drawing board on meaningful use“: 

After a “lively discussion [on the criteria] and considerable input on meaningful use, we decided to send the workgroup back to work on another set,” David Blumenthal, MD, national coordinator for health information technology, said during a media call…. According to Tony Trenkle, director of the CMS Office of e-Health Standards and Services, CMS expects to have a proposed final rule on payment issues – including the definition of meaningful use – by the end of the year.

But Dr. John D. Halamka, CIO of CareGroup, which includes BIDMC, says on his Geek Doctor blog that:   

 After months of anticipation, the definition of Meaningful Use has arrived. 

Sort of. As he points out, the HIT Policy Committee meeting in DC did produce a framework that will help steer docs and geeks in the right direction.

 The meaningful use matrix is organized into specific meaningful use goals to be achieved by 2011, 2013, and 2015. It also lists metrics for these goals to evaluate hospital and clinician progress in meeting them.

 You can check it out here on the Health IT Policy Committee page.

Or, you can read the story that was posted later in the same HIT news, which read: “Officials outline criteria for meaningful use

 Beside Blumenthal, Bostonians at yesterday’s meeting include:

 

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