HIE Hearings by ONC Advisory Committees Jan 29, 2013


Health Information Exchange Hearing
HIT Policy Committee and HIT Standards Committee
Tuesday, January 29, 2013 9:00am – 5:00pm/Eastern Time
The Dupont Circle Hotel
1500 New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington DC, 20036

9:00 a.m.         Call to Order/Roll Call MacKenzie Robertson, ONC
9:05 a.m.         Opening Remarks
                          Farzad Mostashari, National Coordinator

9:15 a.m.         The State of Health Information Exchange
                          Micky Tripathi, Chair, IEWG HITPC

9:45 a.m.         Panel 1: Health Information Exchange Enabling Healthcare Transformation

Moderator: John Halamka

  • Michael Lee, Atrius Health
  • Sandy Selzer, Camden Coalition
  • Keith Hepp, HealthBridge
  • John Blair, Hudson Valley Initiative
  • Karen VanWagner, Plus ACO/North Texas Specialty Physicians

11:00 a.m.       Break

11: 15 a.m.      Panel 2: Technical and Business Barriers and Opportunities

Moderator: Paul Tang

  • John Halamka, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
  • David Horrocks, CRISP
  • Bill Spooner, Sharp
  • Tone Southerland, Greenway

12:45 p.m.      Lunch

1:30 p.m.        Panel 3: Governance Barriers and Opportunities

Moderator: John Halamka

  • David Kibbe, Direct Trust
  • Christopher Alban, Epic
  • Sid Thornton, Care Connectivity Consortium
  • Michael Matthews, Healtheway

2:45 p.m.        Break

3:00 p.m.        Panel 4: Consumer-Mediated Exchange

Moderator: Paul Tang

  • Jeff Donnell, NoMoreClipboard
  • Mary Anne Sterling, Sterling Health
  • Neal Patterson, Cerner
  • Alan Blaustein, Care Planners

4:15 p.m.        Committee Discussion and Next Steps

  • Paul Tang, Vice Chair HITPC

4:45 p.m.        Public Comment

5:00 p.m.        Adjourn

Meeting Agenda: 

National Health IT Week: Sept 10-14, 2012

National Health IT Week

September 10-14, 2012 Excerpted from http://www.healthit.gov/healthitweek/ on Sept 8, 2012

The Seventh Annual National Health IT Week External Links Disclaimer is being held September 10-14, 2012. Health IT Week brings together the entire health IT community under one umbrella to raise awareness about the power of health IT to improve the quality, safety, and cost effectiveness of health care.

The events of the week provide a key opportunity for key stakeholders-vendors, provider organizations, payers, pharmaceutical/biotech companies, government agencies, industry and professional associations, research foundations, and consumer groups- to work together to highlight critical issues and advance a shared vision of improving the nation's health and health care through health IT. During Health IT Week, ONC has developed a specific theme upon which to build each day's events. We hope you are able to join us for as many as your schedule allows.

Health IT Events and Initiatives

  • Monday: Consumer eHealth/Blue Button
    2012 Consumer Health IT Summit: Expanding Access to Health Information
    Monday, September 10
    10:00am – 1:00pm ET (NOTE: Breakout sessions will occur from 1:00 – 3:30PM for attendees who are participating in person)

    Hubert H. Humphrey Building
    200 Independence Avenue S.W.
    Washington, D.C., 20201

    The 2012 Consumer Health IT Summit External Links Disclaimer will bring together federal leaders including: Todd Park, U.S. Chief Technology Officer and Farzad Mostashari, National Coordinator, Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, and inspiring leaders from the private and non-profit sectors. ONC's Pledge Program has grown more than ten-fold since last year-the 2012 Consumer Health IT Summit is a chance to learn from and share your experiences with others who are leading the charge to empower consumers to be better partners in their health.

    View the latest agenda [PDF - 104 KB] External Links Disclaimer

    Event will be Webcast Live at www.hhs.gov/live.

  • Health IT Blog Carnival

    The Health IT Blog Carnival External Links Disclaimer is an open call for healthcare and IT industry bloggers who would like to comment on the impact health IT will have in 2013.

  • Tuesday: Improving Patient Care Through Meaningful Use
    ONC – HRSA Webinar Demo of the New ONC Privacy and Security Training Game and Program Update for Safety Net Providers|
    Tuesday, Septeber 11
    10:00am – 11:00am ET

    This webinar will feature a new training tool from the Office of National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) Privacy and Security Group. ONC will demo an interactive training game for providers and staff on the "do's and don'ts" of privacy and security issues regarding health IT. This training tool can be used to help fulfill a safety net provider's HIPAA privacy training requirements. In addition, ONC will provide a privacy and security update on recent program changes and how they affect safety net providers.


    • Laura Rosas, JD, MPH, Policy Analyst, ONC
    • William Phelps Policy Analyst, ONC

    Register for the webinar External Links Disclaimer

  • PCPCC Advancing Primary Care through Health IT
    Tuesday, September 11
    2:00pm – 3:30pm ET

    The Patient Centered Primary Care Collaborative (PCPCC) is holding a webinar featuring speakers from CMS, ONC, and NCQA to discuss various aspects of health information technology and the patient-centered medical home. Please join us for a free and informative webinar from 2:00-3:30pm ET on Tuesday, September 11, entitled "Advancing Primary Care through Health Information Technology".


    • Richard Baron, MD, MACP, Group Director, Seamless Care Models, CMS Innovation Center
    • Jacob Reider, MD, Acting Chief Medical Officer, ONC
    • Mat Kendall, Director of Office Provider Adoption Support, ONC
    • Johann Chanin, Director in Product Development, NCQA

    Register for the webinar External Links Disclaimer

  • Wednesday: Privacy and Security
    NeHC Privacy and Security Programs|
    Wednesday, September 12
    11:00am – 12:00pm ET

    As part of Health IT Week External Links Disclaimer, National eHealth Collaborative External Links Disclaimer (NeHC) will offer a series of programs with the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) to highlight their various initiatives, including those related to privacy and security. Joy Pritts, Chief Privacy Officer at ONC will kick off the program and Laura Rosas, Privacy and Security Professional at ONC and Will Phelps, HIT Cyber Security Program Officer with HHS, will provide an interactive demonstration of Cybersecure: Your Medical Practice, a new avatar-based game meant to enhance organizations' understanding of privacy and security.


    • Joy Pritts, Chief Privacy Officer, ONC
    • Laura E. Rosas, JD, MPH, Privacy and Security Professional, Office of the Chief Privacy Officer, ONC
    • Will Phelps, HIT Cyber Security Program Officer, US Department of Health and Human Services

    URL: http://www.nationalehealth.org/HITWeek-Security External Links Disclaimer

    Fee: No charge

  • Thursday: Standards, Interoperability, and Health Information Exchange
    NeHC Standards & Interoperability Framework
    Thursday, September 13
    1:00p – 2:30pm ET

    Continuing with the HIT Week Program Series, National eHealth Collaborative External Links Disclaimer (NeHC) will offer a program with Deputy National Coordinator David Muntz and Director of the Office of Science and Technology, Dr. Doug Fridsma to lead a discussion on the progress of the Standards and Interoperability Framework. Dr. Holly Miller from MedAllies, Inc. and David Tao from Siemens Healthcare will discuss the S&I Framework from the perspective of a provider and a vendor respectively.


    • David Muntz, Principal Deputy National Coordinator, ONC
    • Dr. Doug Fridsma, Director, Office of Standards and Interoperability, ONC
    • Dr. Holly Miller, Chief Medical Officer, MedAllies, Inc.
    • David Tao, Senior Key Expert and Interoperability Champion, Siemens Healthcare

    URL: http://www.nationalehealth.org/HITWeek-Standards External Links Disclaimer

    Fee: No charge

  • Friday: Quality and Health IT
    eHC Quality in Health IT Webinar
    Friday, September 14
    11:00am – 12:00pm ET

    The final webinar of the HIT Week Program Series External Links Disclaimer, National eHealth Collaborative  External Links Disclaimer (NeHC) will provide a program featuring Dr. Farzad Mostashari, Dr. Carolyn Clancy, and Dr. Patrick Conway to discuss how ONC, AHRQ, and CMS are collaborating to leverage health IT to improve healthcare quality. Speakers will provide a vision for the quality measurement enterprise of the future as well as the necessary steps to transition to health IT-enabled measurement, reporting and feedback that drives improvement in care and outcomes. They will also identify challenges moving forward in realizing this vision, including the need for continued public-private collaboration to continuously evolve and improve the enterprise.


    • Dr. Farzad Mostashari, National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, ONC
    • Dr. Carolyn Clancy, Director, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)
    • Dr. Patrick Conway, Chief Medical Officer, Director, Office of Clinical Quality Standards and Quality , Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)

    URL: http://www.nationalehealth.org/HITWeek-Quality External Links Disclaimer

    Fee: No charge

  • HRSA Leadership Tips During a Health IT Implementation Webinar

    Friday, September 14
    2:00pm – 3:30pm ET

    This webinar focuses on the importance of leadership in successfully steering an organization through a health IT implementation. It features established leaders who have conducted more than 70 health IT implementations in health centers, rural health clinics, and critical access hospitals. The presenters will also focus on how leadership is important in helping staff, clinicians, patients, a safety net providers' board, and partners adjust to and overcome the barriers that typically accompany a health IT implementation and impede success. Lastly, the presenters will provide leadership examples of unique health IT implementation situations such as meeting meaningful use objectives, changing vendors, and implementing health IT in multiple provider sites. Presenters include:

    • Terry Hill, MPA, Executive Director and Joe Wivoda, Chief Information Officer
      National Rural Health Resource Center
    • Greg Wolverton, Chief Information Officer
      White River Rural Health Center, Arkansas
    • Doug Smith, Executive Director
      Greene County Healthcare, North Carolina

    Register for the webinar External Links Disclaimer


  • HIMSS "Health IT is…" Twitter Chat

    Friday, September 14

    On Friday, September 14, @HIMSS External Links Disclaimer and @HealthStandards External Links Disclaimer are moderating at #HITsm Twitter chat on National Health IT Week at 12 noon ET. More details including chat questions will be shared on the HL7 Standards blog External Links Disclaimer closer to the day.


  • Celebrate in Your Hometown

    Find out 10 ways to get involved External Links Disclaimer, whether externally in your community and/or by communicating the value of health IT within your own organization.


    View a full list of National Health IT activities taking places across the U.S. External Links Disclaimer, or to visit the National Health IT Week website External Links Disclaimer to learn more.

    It's also easy for individuals and organizations across the country to participate. Potential partners – including corporate, non-profit and academic institutions – should visit the National Health IT Week website Partners page External Links Disclaimer to learn more about generating awareness of health IT in their communities.



eHI: 2011 National Forum on Health Information Exchange: July 14

A Special Meeting for Health Information Exchange Initiatives

Accessed on June 16, 2011 and excerpted from eHealth Initiative.
The 2011 National Forum on Health Information Exchange will take place Thursday, July 14, 2011 at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington DC. The HIE Forum will convene healthcare leaders from across the 50 states to discuss the challenges and best practices needed to achieve sustainable national health information exchange. It will also coincide with the release of the 2011 eHI HIE Survey. Interactive panels comprised of health information exchange experts who are in the field will be the primary focus of the event. The majority of the event will include question and answer sessions for audience members.

Transforming Healthcare Through Analytics

Analytics is one of the most exciting and promising areas for HIE innovation. HIEs can provide in-depth analytics to help providers manage patients, control costs and improve quality. Analytics can be used for predictive modeling, real-time point of care decision support, managing population health, quality reporting and comparative effectiveness research. This panel will include payers and HIEs that have experience working in this area.

How HIEs can Work with the Direct Project

This panel will explore the implementation challenges associated with the Direct Project, as well as the potential benefits that can be derived from it. The group will discuss how the Direct Project will help providers and hospitals qualify for meaningful us and encourage health information exchange. Additionally, Providers, patients, and other stakeholders in the delivery of healthcare across the country can be connected through the infrastructure of the Nationwide Health Information Network (NwHIN). While NwHIN is not a physical network, HIEs are moving towards using the standards, SSA disability determination, justifications, and other protocols set by NwHIN.

Insurance Exchanges and HIE: Coordinating Efforts for Success

Following the passage of health reform, states are now in the process of creating health insurance exchanges. Both HIE and Insurance Exchanges require significant effort, resources and focus. Coordination and competing for resources is a challenge. This panel will examine the efforts underway in several states.

Getting to Meaningful Use Through HIE

In preparation for Stage 2 of Meaningful Use, providers and hospitals must begin to prepare for increasing HIE requirements. HIEs will need to determine how they can support hospitals and providers in meeting the new requirements. Included in this topic will be immunization registries, and the stage 2 MU requirements.

Staying Alive in 2011: Different Revenue Models for Sustainability

Creating a sustainable business model remains the greatest challenge facing organizations. New models of sustainability have been suggested in the last couple of years, including utility models. Attaining sustainability is still an enormous hurdle. This panel will include speakers who use different revenue models. They will address best practices for HIE sustainability.

IT Infrastructure Required to Support ACO

With the advent of Accountable Care Organizations, health information exchange is even more critical. ACOs will need to coordinate care, manage patient health, and track administrative data. Panelists will discuss established HIEs can position themselves to support ACOs.

AGENDA for National Forum on HIE: July 14, 2011
Excerpts. For complete agenda, click here.

To register, click here.

7:00 AM
Exhibit Hall Open – Breakfast and Networking
8:30 – 9:00 AM
Welcome, Overview and 2011 HIE Survey Key Findings 

Jennifer Covich Jennifer Covich Bordenick, Chief Executive Officer, eHealth Initiative
9:00 – 9:30 AM

Todd Park Todd Park, Chief Technology Officer, Department of Health and Human Services
Mr. Todd Park will present the keynote address at the 2011 National Forum on Health Information Exchange. In his role as CTO, he is responsible for helping HHS leadership harness the power of data, technology, and innovation to improve the health and welfare of the nation. He will discuss CMS data and how HIEs can use that data.
9:30 – 10:30 AM
Transforming Healthcare Through Analytics 

Sam Ho, EVP and CMO, United Healthcare (Invited)
Dick Thompson Dick Thompson, Executive Director of the Quality Health Network
Carladenise Edwards Carladenise Edwards, President and CEO, Cal eConnect
Ahmed Ghouri, Chief Medical Officer, Anvita Health
10:30 – 11:00 AM
11:00 – 12:00 PM
How HIEs can Work with the Direct Project 

Arien Malec, Coordinator, Direct Project, ONC (Invited)
Jeff Blair, Director of Health Informatics, New Mexico Health Information Collaborative
John Blair, III, MD, President and CEO, Taconic IPA
12:00 – 1:00 PM
1:00 – 2:00 PM
Insurance Exchanges and HIE: Coordinating Efforts for Success 

Glen Shor, Massachusetts Insurance Exchange (Invited)
Kim Davis – Allen, Alabama HIT Coordinator
Edward Dolly, CISSP, Deputy Commissioner, State Health Information Technology Coordinator, West Virginia Bureau for Medical Services
Steve Larsen, Director, Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight, CMS (Invited)
2:00 – 3:00 PM
Getting to Meaningful Use Through HIE 

Zachery Jiwa, Louisiana HIT Coordinator
Micky Tripathi, PhD, President and CEO, Massachusetts eHealth Collaborative
Scott Afzal, HIE Program Director, CRISP
Stephen Palmer, Director, Office of e-Health Coordination, Texas Health and Human Services Commission
3:00 – 3:30 PM
3:30 – 4:30 PM
Staying Alive in 2011: Different Revenue Models for Sustainability 

Paul Forlenza, Vice President of Policy, VITL
Christopher M. Henkenius, Program Director, NeHII, Inc.
Abigail Sears, CEO, OCHIN
Doug Dietzman, Executive Director, Michigan Health Connect
4:30 – 5:30 PM
IT Infrastructure Required to Support ACO 

Moderator: Nam Vo, Senior Director of Healthcare Strategy, Oracle
Phyllis Albritton, Executive Director, CORHIO
5:30 – 7:30 PM

For latest and complete information on eHI National Forum, click here.

Beacon Communities: One Year Review on Blog, Brookings and Webcast

Beacon Community Program

Blog: What We Can Learn from the Beacon Communities on Their First Birthday?
Brookings Event: May 17 8:30am to 12:00noon
Webcast From Brookings: Click here Health IT Buzz Blog: What We Can Learn from the Beacon Communities on Their First Birthday?

May 13, 2011 / Originally Posted by Aaron McKethan, Director of Beacon Communities Program, on ONC’s Health IT Buzz blog and reposted by e-Healthcare Marketing

A year has passed since 17 diverse communities nationwide were notified by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) that they would receive Beacon Community awards. These critical resources empowered the Beacon Community Awardees (“the Beacons”) to build and strengthen their local health IT capacity, use health IT in innovative ways to improve the efficiency and quality of care they can provide their patients, and identify and disseminate these innovations and lessons-learned to others.

Over the past year, as we have documented in a recent Health Affairs article and as we will discuss at our upcoming May 17 Brookings Institution “Beacon Birthday” event, the Beacons have focused on clearly defining who their communities are. They have done so using data (such as patterns of where patients seek care), and community engagement activities (including public meetings and direct engagement with hospital leaders, physicians, and consumer organization leaders) to paint a picture of the local “community” on whose behalf the Beacon interventions are being deployed.

This past year has been a busy and productive one for the Beacons. For example, they have established governance structures that give local stakeholders a voice, but also permit the community to make decisions quickly when necessary. They have worked to achieve local consensus on core health and health care improvement objectives, while partnering with local evaluation, health IT, and clinical leaders to identify and establish baselines for relevant measures to track progress on meeting those objectives over time. Beacon leaders have also worked to design and deploy the initial wave of clinical interventions relevant to these objectives, such as changes in processes that hospitals use to discharge patients so they can manage their own health and exchange information with their regular physician. And, they have designed strategies to deploy those interventions in ways that will allow for refinements to be made based on early results. In other words, they have not only put in place innovative strategies for improving care, but also systems that allow them to learn from challenges and obstacles and make the improvements necessary.

Beacon Communities like that in Bangor, ME have used the development of a statewide governance process to ensure that performance improvement goals being pursued through the Bangor Beacon are aligned with overall policy and strategic goals at the state level.

Beacon Communities have also committed considerable time and attention to establishing a focused set of community objectives. The public officials and other health care leaders involved in the Crescent City Beacon Community in New Orleans, LA, for example, have worked hard to identify a core set of community objectives that unite the interests of the entire stakeholder community, including large academic health systems, small health centers, physician practices and, of course, patients. An encouraging aspect of this work is that these objectives are not merely being established to fulfill the requirements of the Beacon grant program, but also to help chart a course for the community over the longer term.

In addition, Beacon Communities have each worked to establish a baseline using performance measurements and data derived from multiple sources, including electronic health records. They have experienced firsthand the challenges of combining data from multiple sources to better understand the “current state” of the community’s performance on key indicators like hospital readmissions, rates of “good” diabetes care, or prevention indicators. The Keystone Beacon Community, for example, has used its baseline data to help track its progress in delivering care management support to patients facing multiple chronic conditions who typically face the highest risk of costly medical complications that can be prevented through careful care coordination and patient support. In fact, even at this early stage in its development, the Keystone Beacon Community has already documented the avoidance of several serious adverse events using its Beacon care managers and health IT systems.

Further, Beacon Communities in Colorado, North Carolina, and Utah have taken the lead in identifying strategies to facilitate providers participating in the program learning from each other about their experiences using technology and data for performance improvement. Just this week, for example, the Colorado Beacon Consortium is holding its second “learning collaborative” that will provide training and an opportunity for participating physicians and their staffs to learn how best to incorporate new technologies in their practices.

The first year of the Beacon Community program laid the ground work for rapid implementation of core interventions moving forward in each community that will support patients and clinicians in achieving better, more efficient outcomes over the next several years. As we now shift gears from program development to large-scale implementation of clinical interventions, we will take a moment to consider what we’ve already learned at this early stage of the Beacon program.

To learn more about just how far the Beacons have come in blazing the trail on innovatively using health IT to improve the health of their patients in ways that can be adopted by others, come join us on May 17 at the Brookings Institution’s Engelberg Center for Health Reform.Exit Disclaimer The National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, Dr. Farzad Mostashari, Aneesh Chopra of the White House Office of Science and Technology, Joe McCannon from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), Mark McClellan of the Brookings Institution, several Beacon leaders, and I will discuss how health IT may be best used to improve health care quality and reduce costs with a special emphasis on what we can learn from the experience of the Beacon Communities on their first birthday. We will also hear from Beacon leaders about their perspectives about how health IT-driven health care improvements can be sustained by linking health IT investments to payment reforms that increasingly reward improvements in outcomes.

Please also check out a series of blog posts by individual Beacons to be published by Health Affairs over the next week that will provide yet more detail on the truly innovative work Beacons are doing across the country to realize the potential of health IT to improve health and health care. Finally, please join me on May 18 between 3:00 and 4:00 p.m. ET at #ONCchat for a live twitter chat moderated by Sherri Reynolds (Beacon Board member and consumer advocate engaged with Beacon development in Washington state) when I will be taking your questions about the topics and themes that emerge from the May 17 Brookings event and shared lessons-learned about the Beacons at the one-year mark.

Brookings Event:
“Health IT in an Era of Accountable Care: Update from the Beacon Communities”
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Hosted by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and the Engelberg Center for Health Care Reform at the Brookings Institution

The event will highlight:

  • Beacon Community Program accomplishments and future plans
  • Insights on meaningful use of health IT
  • The expansion of provider payment reforms

U.S. Chief Technology Officer Aneesh Chopra, Senior Advisor to the CMS Administrator Joseph McCannon, National Coordinator for Health Information Technology Dr. Farzad Mostashari, and Director of Beacon Communities Program Aaron McKethan, will offer keynote remarks.

WHEN: Tuesday, May 17, 2011, 8:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (EDT)

WHERE: Falk Auditorium, The Brookings Institution,
1775 Massachusetts Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20036

To join Brookings for this event, please RSVP to Erin Weireter at eweireter@brookings.edu or 202-797-6033.

If you are unable to attend, the event will be available to remote participants via a free Webcast. A video will also be available soon after the event on the Brookings website and ONC YouTube channel.

If you have any questions regarding the Webcast or the event, please contact Amanda Misiti at Amanda.Misiti@hhs.gov.

Brookings Event Agenda
Opening Remarks and Meeting Objectives
Mark McClellan, Engelberg Center for Health Care Reform at Brookings

Keynote Address: An Update on the Federal Health IT Strategy

Aneesh Chopra, White House Office of Science and Technology Policy
Joseph McCannon, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
Farzad Mostashari, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Panel I: Priorities for Health System Improvement

Aaron McKethan, Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology – Moderator
Marc Bennett, HealthInsight, Inc.
Ted Chan, University of California, San Diego Medical Center
Sherry Reynolds, Beacon Community of the Inland Northwest
Julie Schilz, Colorado Beacon Consortium
Herb Smitherman, Jr., Wayne State University

Panel II: Harnessing IT for Payment Reforms

Mark McClellan – Moderator
Catherine Bruno, Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems
Christopher Chute, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine
Robert Steffel, HealthBridge
James Walker, Geisinger Health System

Closing Remarks

Mark McClellan
Farzad Mostashari

Free Live Webcast from Brookings. Archived video will also be available soon after the event on the Brookings website and ONC YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/HHSONC .

Beacon Communities

(Accessed on ONC site on May 14, 2011)
Listed below are the 17 Beacon Communities, their awards, and snapshot of their goals. For further  information about a specific Beacon Community, click the name of the community. As of May 14, 2011, ONC has added a PDF overview of each Beacon Community in addition to a previously published video for each and the Community’s web site where they exist.

Beacon Community

Award Amount


Bangor Beacon Community, Brewer, ME $12,749,740 Improve the health of patients with diabetes, lung disease, heart disease, and asthma by enhancing care management; improving access to, and use of, adult immunization data; preventing unnecessary ED visits and re-admissions to hospitals; and facilitating access to patient records using health information technology.
Beacon Community of the Inland Northwest, Spokane, WA $15,702,479 Increase care coordination for patients with diabetes in rural areas and expand the existing health information exchange to provide a higher level of connectivity throughout the region.
Colorado Beacon Community, Grand Junction, CO $11,878,279 Demonstrate how costs can be reduced and patient care improved, through the collection, analysis, and sharing of clinical data, and the redesign of primary care practices and clinics.
Crescent City Beacon Community, New Orleans, LA $13,525,434 Reduce racial health disparities and improve control of diabetes and smoking cessation rates by linking technically isolated health systems, providers, and hospitals; and empower patients by increasing their access to Personal Health Records.
Delta BLUES Beacon Community, Stoneville, MS $14,666,156 Improve access to care for diabetic patients through the meaningful use of electronic health records and health information exchange by primary care providers in the Mississippi Delta, and increase the efficiency of health care in the area by reducing excess health care costs for patients with diabetes through the use of electronic health record.
Greater Cincinnati Beacon Community, Cincinnati, OH $13,775,630 Develop new quality improvement and care coordination initiatives focusing on patients with pediatric asthma, adult diabetes, and encouraging smoking cessation, and provide better clinical information and IT “decision support” tools to physicians, health systems, federally qualified health centers, and critical access hospitals.
Greater Tulsa Health Access Network Beacon Community, Tulsa, OK $12,043,948 Leverage broad community partnerships with hospitals, providers, payers, and government agencies to expand a community-wide care coordination system, which will increase appropriate referrals for cancer screenings, decrease unnecessary specialist visits and (with telemedicine) increase access to care for patients with diabetes.
Hawaii County Beacon Community, Hilo, HI $16,091,390 Improve the health of the Hawaii Island residents through implementation of a series of healthcare system improvements and interventions across independent hospitals, physicians and physician groups. Engaging patients in their own healthcare is also a primary focus.
Western New York Beacon Community, Buffalo, NY $16,092,485 Expand the Western New York network, close gaps in service, and improve health outcomes for patients with diabetes.
Utah Beacon Community, Salt Lake City, UT $15,790,181 Improve the management and coordination of care for patients with diabetes and other life-threatening conditions, decrease unnecessary costs in the health care system, and improve public health.
Central Indiana Beacon Community, Indianapolis, IN $16,008,431 Expand the country’s largest Health Information Exchange to new community providers in order to improve cholesterol and blood sugar control for diabetic patients and reduce preventable re-admissions through telemonitoring of high risk chronic disease patients after hospital discharge.
Keystone Beacon Community, Danville, PA $16,069,110 Establish community-wide care coordination through the expanded availability and use of health information technology for both clinicians and patients in a five-county area to enhance care for patients with pulmonary disease and congestive heart failure.
Rhode Island Beacon Community, Providence, RI $15,914,787 Improve the management of care through several health information technology initiatives to support Rhode Island’s transition to the Patient Centered Medical Home model, which create systems to measure and report processes and outcomes that drive improved quality, reduce health care costs, and improve health outcomes.
San Diego Beacon Community, San Diego, CA $15,275,115 Expand electronic health information exchange to enable providers to improve medical care decisions and overall care quality, to empower patients to engage in their own health management, and to reduce unnecessary and redundant testing.
Southeast Michigan Beacon Community, Detroit, MI $16,224,370 Make long-term, sustainable improvements in the quality and efficiency of diabetes care through leveraging existing and new technologies across health care settings, and providing practical support to help clinicians, nurses, and other health professionals make the best use of electronic health data.
Southeastern Minnesota Beacon Community, Rochester, MN $12,284,770 Enhance patient care management, reduce costs associated with hospitalization and emergency services for patients with diabetes and childhood asthma, and reduce health disparities for underserved populations and rural communities.
Southern Piedmont Beacon Community, Concord, NC $15,907,622 Increase use health information technology, including health information exchange among providers and increased patient access to health records to improve coordination of care, encourage patient involvement in their own medical care, and improve health outcomes while controlling cost.

Health Affairs, April 2011
“An Early Status Report On The Beacon Communities’ Plans For Transformation Via Health Information Technology”
Authors: Aaron McKethan, Craig Brammer, Parastou Fatemi, Minyoung Kim, Janhavi Kirtane, Jason Kunzman, Shaline Rao, and Sachin H. Jain.

Aaron McKethan is program director and Craig Brammer is the deputy director of the Beacon Community Program in the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, Department of Health and Human Services, in Washington, D.C.

“Based on the early experiences of the seventeen diverse Beacon Communities, this paper describes program design features that characterize how these initiatives are organized.”

Link to Health Affairs Abstract

Blumenthal Letter #24: Our Journey Continues: $80 Million in Add’l Funds to RECs, 8 HIEs, and Community Colleges

Our Journey Continues…
January 27, 2011 (accessed 1/27/2011 from ONC site)

With the new year, we are turning the page to a next chapter in our journey to adoption and meaningful use of health information technology (HIT). As we begin this chapter, ONC is accelerating progress with new funding for programs vital to our goals.

No doubt the “star player” in 2011 is the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Records (EHR) Incentive Programs. As of this year, providers can begin qualifying for significant payments through Medicare and Medicaid, as they achieve meaningful use objectives.

But equally important are the “supporting players.” These are the programs created under the HITECH Act to help providers adopt and achieve meaningful use of EHRs through technical assistance, through information exchange, and through development of a new workforce of HIT specialists.

These supporting programs all started last year, and they’ve had a successful launch:

  • We funded 62 Regional Extension Centers (RECs) across the nation to provide technical assistance, especially for smaller practice primary care providers, rural hospitals and other settings which serve the underserved. We want the RECs to assist at least 100,000 primary care providers. And already, some 38,000 primary care providers have enrolled for REC assistance.
  • We created a state grant program to support health information exchange (HIE) and facilitate all the potential uses and benefits of secure information sharing. Already, approved HIE implementation plans are in place in 25 states.
  • We funded 84 community colleges to train HIT specialists that will help to meet the anticipated national shortage of 50,000. The first 3,400 students will graduate by May, 2011 – and with excellent job prospects.

This month we are adding new funding for these important initiatives:

For the RECs, we are providing additional funding of $32 million. This especially reflects our plan to accelerate outreach to health care providers to encourage registration for the CMS Incentive Programs and to provide more support in the field as providers adopt health information technology in their practices. We recognize that the early transition to HIT can be challenging and we want to make sure that our RECs are fully operational to help make this transition as smooth as possible. We are committed to offer substantial ongoing support to achieve meaningful use through the RECs.

For HIE, we are providing $16 million in new Challenge Grants to encourage breakthrough innovations for health information exchange that can be leveraged widely to support nationwide health information exchange and interoperability. The HIE Challenge Grant Program is providing 10 awards of between $1 and $2 million to State HIE Cooperative Agreement Program grantees, to develop innovative and scalable solutions in five key areas: achieving specific health goals, improving care transitions, consumer-mediated information exchange, enhanced querying for patient care, and fostering distributed population-level analytics.

For community colleges, $32 million in second year funding is being provided to continue academic HIT programs training the specialists needed to make rapid adoption and meaningful use possible. We remain on track to ramp up and graduate an estimated 10,500 students a year through our community college programs.

In playing their part for HIT adoption and meaningful use, every awardee in our supporting programs is a star! Awardees and funding amounts for these programs can be found at http://healthit.hhs.gov.

Warmest Regards,
David Blumenthal, MD, MPP
National Coordinator for Health Information Technology

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) encourages you to share this information as we work together to enhance the quality, safety and value of care and the health of all Americans through the use of electronic health records and health information technology.

For more information and to receive regular updates from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, please subscribe to our Health IT News list.

See list of newly awarded challenge grants to state HIEs on e-Healthcare Marketing.

ONC Awards 10 Challenge Grants to 8 State HIEs: Totals $16 Million

Health Information Exchange Challenge Grant Program
Excerpted from ONC site on 1/27/2011.
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) has awarded $16 million in new Challenge Grants to encourage breakthrough innovations for health information exchange that can be leveraged widely to support nationwide health information exchange and interoperability.
The Health Information Exchange (HIE) Challenge Grant Program is providing 10 awards between $1 and $2 million to State HIE Cooperative Agreement Program grantees to develop innovative and scalable solutions in five key areas:

  1. Achieving health goals through health information exchange
  2. Improving long-term and post-acute care transitions
  3. Consumer-mediated information exchange
  4. Enabling enhanced query for patient care
  5. Fostering distributed population-level analytics
The ONC-funded State HIE Cooperative Agreement Program promotes secure exchange of health information to enable patient-centered care and providers’ achievement of meaningful use requirements.
State/SDE Previous Award Amount Amount Awarded
January 2011
Colorado Regional Health Information Organization $9,175,777 $1,718,783


Georgia Department of Community Health $13,003,003 $1,686,989


Indiana Health Information Technology, Inc. $10,300,000 $1,718,439


Indiana Health Information Technology, Inc. $1,267,970


Massachusetts Technology Park Corporation $10,599,719 $1,717,610


Massachusetts Technology Park Corporation $1,675,019


Maryland Department of Health & Mental Hygiene $9,313,924 $1,683,171


HealthShare Montana $5,767,926 $1,400,802


NC Dept of State Treasurer $12,950,860 $1,708,693


Oklahoma Health Care Authrity $8,883,741 $1,719,086


TOTAL $79,994,950 $16,296,562

Learn more about the funding opportunity for this important initiative.

eHI Finalizes Jan 19-20 Annual Conference Agenda, Washington, DC.

eHealth Initiative Annual Conference,
Turning Policy into Action
Washington, DC

Featuring David Blumenthal and Joy Pritts from ONC, Keynote from Cokie Roberts.

Panels on CMS Innovation, Looking Ahead to Stage 2 Meaningful Use, Outlook for Health Care Policy with New Congress, eHI Awards, Privacy and Health IT, Care Coordination in Real Word, Creating Accountable Care Organizations, Data for Quality Improvement, and Progress and Barriers at State Level: HIT Coordination Panel.

For more information and registration, click here.

DAY ONE: Wednesday, January 19, 2011
9:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
eHI Members Only

1:30 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Conference Registration 

2:00 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.
Welcome and Overview of the Day
–Jennifer Covich Bordenick, Chief Executive Officer, eHealth Initiative
–William F. Jessee, MD, FACMPE, FACPM, President and Chief Executive Officer, Medical Group Management Association, 2011 eHealth Initiative Board Chair

2:15 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
A Discussion with the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation
Guest Speakers:
–Moderator: Steve Stack, MD, Member, Secretary, American Medical Association
– Mandy Krauthamer Cohen, MD, MPH, Senior Advisor, Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation

3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Meaningful Use: A Look Ahead to Stage 2
–Moderator: Larry Yuhasz, Director, Strategy and Business Development, Thomson Reuters
–Mark Bell, Chief Information Officer, North Carolina Hospital Association
–Hank Fanberg, Technology Advocacy, Christus Health
–Charles Jarvis, Vice President of Healthcare Services and Government Relations, NextGen Healthcare
–Harry F. Laws, MD, FAAP, Chief Medical Information Officer, Community Health Network, Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, Indiana School of Medicine

4:00 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.
The New Congress in 2011: Outlook for Health Care Policy
Introduction: Leigh Burchell, Allscripts, and 2011 eHI Policy Steering Committee Vice Chair
–Democrat Perspective: David Thomas, Principal, Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti Inc.
–Republican Perspective: Alex Vogel, Partner, Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti Inc.

4:45 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Awards Ceremony & Welcome
Presented by: William F. Jessee, MD, FACMPE, FACPM, President and Chief Executive Officer, Medical Group Management Association, 2011 eHealth Initiative Board Chair

DAY TWO: Thursday, January 20, 2011

7:30 a.m. – 8:30 a.m.
Registration & Breakfast

8:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.
Conference Overview Welcome Back

9:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
Privacy and Health IT: A Conversation with the Chief Privacy Officer
Introduction: Gerry Hinkley, Co-Chair, Health Care Industry Team, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
–Joy Pritts, Chief Privacy Officer, Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, US Department of Health and Human Services

9:30 a.m.- 10:30 a.m.
Care Coordination in the Real World
Moderated by: Bruce Henderson, National Leader, EHR/HIE Practice, PricewaterhouseCoopers
Guest Speakers:
–Robert Fortini, Chief Clinical Officer, Bon Secours Medical Group from Bon Secours Health System
–Dr. Bruce Hamory, MD, Executive Vice President, Managing Partner, Geisinger Consulting Services, Geisinger Health System
–Charles Kennedy, MD, Vice President for Health Information Technology, WellPoint

10:30 a.m – 10:45 a.m.|
Networking Break

10:45 a.m.- 11:45 a.m.
Creating Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs)
Moderated by: John Edelblut, Senior Executive, Accenture
–Andrew Ziskind, Partner and Senior Executive, Accenture
–Dick Salmon, MD, PhD, National Medical Director for Quality, CIGNA HealthCare
–Mike Flammini, Head of Strategy, Aetna
–James Walton, DO, MBA, Vice President of Health Equity and Chief Equity Officer, Baylor Health Care System

11:45 a.m.- 12:45 p.m.
Lunch and Networking

12:45 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.|
Data for Quality Improvement
Moderator: Daniel Carmody, CPA, ChFC, Operations Director, Information Strategy and Solutions, CIGNA HealthCare
–Janet Corrigan, President and CEO, National Quality Forum
–Scott Cullen, MD, Lead for Clinical Analytics, Accenture
–Tracey Moorhead, President & CEO, Care Continuum Alliance
–Gurvaneet Randhawa, MD, MPH, Senior Advisor on Clinical Genomics & Personalized Medicine, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

 2:00 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.
Networking Break

2:15 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
HIT Coordination Panel: Progress and Barriers at State Level
Moderator: Rebecca Little, Senior Vice President, Medicity
–Doug Dietzman, Executive Director, Michigan Health Connect
–Gina Bianco Perez, Executive Director, Delaware Health Information Network
–John K. Evans, MHA, FACHE, President, S2A Consulting
–Liza Fox-Wylie, Policy Director, Colorado Regional Health Information Organization 
–Tom Liddell, Executive Director, Michiana Health Information Network
–Vikas Khosla, President and CEO, BluePrint Healthcare IT, NJ HIN Privacy and Security Committee Subject Matter Expert

3:30 p.m. – 4:15 p.m.
Keynote Address
–Introduction by Diane Jones, Vice President of Policy and Government Affairs, eHealth Initiative
–David Blumenthal, MD, MPH, National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, US Department of Health and Human Services

4:15 p.m. – 5:00 p.m
Keynote Address:
Introduction by Jennifer Covich, Chief Executive Officer, eHealth Initiative
–Cokie Roberts Cokie Roberts, ABC Congressional Correspondent and Senior News Analyst for National Public Radio

5:00 p.m. – 5:15 p.m
Closing Remarks
Jennifer Covich Bordenick, Chief Executive Officer, eHealth Initiative

For more information and registration, click here.

New Jersey: 20th State to Receive ONC Approval for HIE Operational Plan

ONC Approves 20th Strategic and Operational State HIE Plan: New Jersey
On January 13, 2011, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT approved the operational portion of the State of New Jersey’s Strategic and Operational Plan for Health Information Exchange. This should lead soon to a release of funding for the first of four years of the plan. Previously only planning funds were released. Total Award Amount for New Jersey is $11,408,594. NJ-HITEC, New Jersey’s Regional Extension Center (REC), has already been awarded $23,048,351. Funds for HIE and REC programs are released based on reaching specific milestones.

List of Approved Plans on ONC’s State HIE Program site
New Jersey Strategic and Operational Plan–ONC Summary [PDF]

Following are excerpts from the first five of six pages ONC released summarizing the NJ program. The sixth page is an HIE Inventory, enabling easier comparisons with other state programs.

Health Information Exchange
Strategic and Operational Plan Profile

The State of New Jersey is committed to building on existing health information technology and exchange investments in developing a strategy for providers in the state to meet the EHR Incentive Program meaningful use requirements. It has developed a strategy for health information exchange that includes first strengthening exchange in local nodes and then creating a “network-of-networks” linking four regional health information exchange organizations (RHIOs) to create statewide coverage.

Model and Services
The New Jersey plan builds the capacity of local/regional exchange efforts. The state will use a large portion of the funds to support four local RHIOs in increasing data liquidity and supporting providers in achieving meaningful use. The work to strengthen the capacity of local exchange will be paired with strategic policy and operational interventions to increase lab data liquidity and e-prescribing participation statewide:
• Enable lab results delivery from Quest Diagnostics using the NHIN Direct specifications.
• Implement regulations that will require commercial and private laboratories to make electronically interfaced laboratory result transactions available to physician EHRs and regional HIEs at no extra cost to physicians.
• Implement a statewide education program on e-prescribing that targets the 15% of pharmacies not currently enabled for this functionality. This includes identification and monitoring of the targeted pharmacies.
In a later phase, that state will support node to node exchange and other services. The planned statewide services will include:
• Statewide broker/backbone that will connect HIEs
o Record locator services to find location of patient records across the state
o Patient health record services
• State-provided data from key registries (Immunization, Lead, Public Health, etc.)
• State-provided data on Medicaid Medication History
• State-provided Master Patient Index/Master Client Index (MPI/MCI)
• NJHIN stored “master” Record Locator Service for Standalone
EHRs and out-of-state provider access

• Supporting Innovation: New Jersey has a special focus on incentivizing creative innovation within the state. They have established the HIT Innovation Center which is a partnership between the St. Barnabus healthcare system and the New Jersey Institute of Technology. There is a program under development to use NJIT students to create and develop HIT applications as well. The HIT Coordinator Office, the NJ-HITEC and the Innovation Center will be sponsoring an Innovation Summit in early 2011 to feature pilot projects already in place as well as special projects for future consideration. They also continue to emphasize and support a number of innovative projects currently in place across the state including:
o Meridian Home Health Pilot
o Bergen Regional Center Behavioral Health Pilot
o Virtua – Personal Health Records
o St Joe’s – Telemedicine

• Advancing Multi-State Collaboration: New Jersey has expressed an interest in leading new multi-state coordination activities for the mid-Atlantic region. All multi-state HIE coordination initiatives New Jersey is exploring will be in accordance with NHIN standards for communication and interaction. These include:
o Hosting a multi-state collaboration event – New Jersey plans to host its own multi-state collaboration event with surrounding states, to focus on sharing of plans and establishing an interstate approach for secure HIE.
o Project Management focus on multi-state pilots – New Jersey plans to assign full-time project management support to oversee and coordinate several interstate secure HIE pilot initiatives.
o Regional HIE data exchange – Three regional HIEs (South Jersey HIE, the Virtua HIE, and the South Jersey Health System HIE) have plans to exchange data in late 2010/early 2011 with Fox Chase Cancer Center’s HIE, located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

[ONC issued new guidance to State HIE Programs on July 6, 2010, in the form of a Program Information Notice, which established "The immediate priority of the State HIE Program is to ensure that all eligible providers within every state have at least one option available to them to meet the HIE requirements of meaningful use in 2011... (and therefore) states and SDEs shall outline in their State Strategic and Operational Plans (state plans) a concrete and operationally feasible plan to address and enable these three HIE capabilities in the next year:
1. E-prescribing
2. Receipt of structured lab results
3. Sharing patient care summaries across unaffiliated organizations]

NJ E-Prescribing Landscape
As of the end of 2009, there are 1,609 community active pharmacies capable of filling e-prescriptions. This figure excludes hospital pharmacies, but includes both chain and independent facilities (both retail and closed) and represents an 85% adoption rate across pharmacies in New Jersey. A total of 2,696 physicians routed prescriptions electronically in New Jersey, representing a 15% e-prescribing adoption rate for physicians in New Jersey.
NJ E-Prescribing Strategy
The State HIT Coordinator’s office, working NJ-HITEC, the NJ Dept of Health and Senior Services, and state associations, will develop a new program tentatively titled “ePrescribing New Jersey” to target pharmacists, clinicians, and consumers. In January, the state will develop the list of pharmacies who do not offer ePrescribing by matching Surescripts’ list of ePrescribing pharmacies against the NJ Board of Pharmacy’s list of all licensed pharmacies in the state. In February, the Coordinator’s office, working with the Department of Health and Board of Pharmacy will develop information on ePrescribing in the form of a course, handouts, and Web pages (part of the state HIT Coordinator’s Web site). In March, the state and REC will coordinate the start of a series of educational sessions with the HIEs to target non-eRx pharmacies, consumers, and clinicians.

NJ Structured Lab Results Landscape
New Jersey has 5,703 Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA)-recognized laboratories with various certifications. Of these, there are 85 CLIA-accredited independent clinical laboratories, 4,079 recognized physician office laboratories, and 134 CLIA-accredited hospital-based clinical laboratories in the State.

Electronic sharing of laboratory orders and results within hospitals is already a generally accepted practice for all hospitals in New Jersey.

National laboratories have a large presence in New Jersey. These laboratory companies provide connectivity solutions to many state hospitals and healthcare providers for the exchange of electronic lab orders and results. Three of the largest independent clinical laboratories in New Jersey (Quest Diagnostics Inc., Laboratory Corporation of America, and Bio-Reference Laboratories) are able to directly interface with numerous electronic health record (EHR) systems. These interfaces allow for EHR systems to send lab orders electronically and receive results that can be downloaded directly into the EHR. Other connectivity solutions offered by laboratory companies in the State include proprietary portals for requesting lab orders and receiving results.

While the capability to exchange lab orders and results exists within the State, healthcare providers and regional health information exchange organizations have had varying levels of success incorporating laboratory data from commercial laboratory companies into their electronic health information exchange environments. Hospitals and health information exchange organizations that want to exchange lab data with independent laboratories are required to build custom interfaces to support these integration points and to incur ongoing transaction costs. The resulting drain on monetary and human resources for these point-to-point interfaces for electronic laboratory data exchange continues to be an adoption-limiting factor in the State.
NJ Structured Lab Results Strategy
New Jersey will approach the adoption of electronic transmission of lab results by leveraging the NJHINT law S323 and the regulations already in place for the electronic reporting of medical data to the NJ Department of Health and Senior Services. The Office of Statewide HIT Coordinator will pursue statutory and regulatory avenues in 2010/2011 that will require commercial and private laboratories to make electronically interfaced laboratory result transactions available to physician EHRs and regional HIEs at no extra cost to physicians (replacing traditional means such as faxing of results).

NJ Patient Care Summary Landscape
There is minimal current activity in the state related to the sharing of patient care summaries.
NJ Patient Care Summary Strategy
New Jersey is taking several approaches to enable this requirement. The primary mechanism is to pursue certification processes and participation agreements with the HIEs that will require them to support the exchange of Patient Care Summaries (PCS) with Physician EHRs and other HIEs in order to be eligible for state-sponsored funding and related state benefits.

Blumenthal Letter #23: EHR Adoption Set to Soar

EHR Adoption Set to Soar
January 13, 2010 (accessed from ONC site on 1/13/2010)

Portrait of Dr. Blumenthal

The tide is turning.

An increasing number of office-based physician practices report having an electronic health record, according to a recent survey.  Survey respondents also reported high levels of interest in adopting electronic health records and health information technology.

The survey [PDF - 220 KB] was conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), an agency of the HHS’ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

More and more physicians are putting a private and secure electronic framework in place to realize long-term improvements in quality of care, efficiency, and health costs. But the presence of an EHR does not make a physician a meaningful user.

An electronic health record, as defined in the survey, could have been just a “basic” EHR—one that stores patient demographic information, patient problem lists, clinical notes, laboratory and imaging results, and orders for prescriptions. Basic EHRs are not capable of being used to meet the requirements of meaningful use.

Fortunately, additional data commissioned by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and carried out in the course of regular annual surveillance by the NCHS and by the American Hospital Association (AHA) provide further encouragement that EHR adoption is about to pick up speed.

The NCHS survey found that 41 percent of office-based physicians are currently planning to achieve meaningful use of EHRs and apply for incentive payments. Four-fifths of these, or about a third of all office-based physicians (32.4 percent), plan to apply this year.

The AHA survey found that 81 percent of acute care non-federal hospitals plan to achieve meaningful use of EHRs and apply for incentive payments. About two-thirds of hospitals (65 percent) plan to enroll during Stage 1 of the Incentive Programs, in 2011-2012.

At ONC we are gratified that such sizeable percentages of physicians and hospitals intend to take the plunge—and to take the plunge sooner rather than later.

Acting early (in Stage 1) means obtaining maximum funding through the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs. Physicians and other eligible professionals can qualify for incentive payments totaling as much as $44,000 through Medicare or $63,750 through Medicaid. Hospitals can qualify for millions of dollars of incentive payments for implementing and becoming meaningful users of EHR technology.

The registration process is now open for health care providers to obtain significant incentive payments for the adoption and meaningful use of certified EHRs.

We recognize that EHR adoption and meaningful use are hard work and a big investment, especially for small primary care practices, where the vast majority of physicians work and where most of patient care is coordinated and documented. Many of these providers still need to learn about the opportunity they have.

Now is the time. Unprecedented resources, including the EHR incentive and technical assistance programs created under HITECH, are available. Sixty-two Regional Extension Centers (RECs) across the nation are prepared to offer customized, on-the-ground assistance. And the Health IT Workforce Development Program is training talented professionals to help providers implement and manage their health IT systems. Moreover, medical and hospital professional organizations are lighting the way.

Rest assured there are also regulations in place to make sure that information stored in an EHR is protected. The same Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) privacy and security protections that apply to paper records also apply to EHRs.

Never again will the same level of resources and talent be devoted to helping providers make the switch to health IT.

The incipient surge in EHR adoption is galvanizing, especially for those of us who are committed to making the transition from paper-based medical records to EHRs as seamless and as successful as possible for every provider. ONC will continue to offer encouragement and support.

For more information on the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs, visit http://www.cms.gov/EHRIncentivePrograms. Providers can also find REC contact information at http://healthit.hhs.gov/rec. Learn about the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules by visiting http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/privacy/.

Warmest Regards,

David Blumenthal, MD, MPP
National Coordinator for Health Information Technology

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) encourages you to share this information as we work together to enhance the quality, safety and value of care and the health of all Americans through the use of electronic health records and health information technology.

For more information and to receive regular updates from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, please subscribe to our Health IT News list.

State Medicaid EHR Programs’ Expected Rollout Dates Released by CMS

Going Beyond the January and February 2011 State Medicaid EHR Incentive Program Rollout Dates and Web sites
Beyond the rollout dates of January and February 2011 for 14 state Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released the anticipated dates for the program to go live in the balance of the states and territories as of December 15, 2010. State and territory Medicaid information sites are also shown.

The CMS EHR Incentive Programs Spotlight Page listed the states that will have their State EHR Medicaid programs ready in the first two months of 2011.

Registration opens in the following states on January 3, 2011:

  • Alaska
  • Iowa
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Oklahoma
  • Michigan
  • Mississippi
  • North Carolina
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas

Registration opens in the following states in February 2011:

  • California
  • Missouri
  • North Dakota

List of all states and territories with expected dates they reported to CMS when they anticipate their state/territory Medicaid EHR programs to be ready. [The list in PDF form was dated December 15, 2010, and was included in 1/3/2011 update of a CMS FAQ on how dual eligible (Medicare and Medicaid) hospitals should register.]

“The Medicaid EHR Incentive Program is a voluntary program established by Congress, but administered individually by each State and territory. While we currently estimate that every State will have an Incentive Program in the future, the preparation for the program varies from State to State. Below is the estimated date each State [and territory] intends to begin accepting registrations for their Medicaid EHR Incentive Program. These dates are provided to CMS by the States, and this list is updated monthly. Even States that are listed as “Unknown” are progressing toward program launch; however, they have not provided CMS with an estimated launch date [as of December 15, 2010].”

State EHR Medicaid Registration Dates and Web sites

State Expected Launch Date Program URL
AK January 2011 http://hss.state.ak.us/hit/
AL March 2011 http://www.onehealthrecord.alabama.gov/
AR Spring 2011 https://www.medicaid.state.ar.us/provider/arra.aspx
AS Unknown No State URL Known
AZ Unknown http://www.azahcccs.gov/HIT/about/Incentives.aspx
CA February 2011 http://medi-cal.ehr.ca.gov/
CO Unknown http://www.colorado.gov/cs/Satellite/HCPF/HCPF/1251581838726
CT Unknown http://www.ct.gov/dph/cwp/view.asp?a=3936&q=462912&dphNav_GID=1993
DC Unknown No State URL Known
DE Spring 2011 http://dhss.delaware.gov/dhss/dmma/ehr_summary.html
FL Unknown http://fhin.net/FHIN/MedicaidElectronicHealthRecordIncentiveProgram.shtml
GA Unknown http://dch.georgia.gov/00/article/0,2086,31446711_154959664_156789923,00.html
GU Unknown http://dphss.guam.gov
HI Unknown http://www.med-quest.us/providers/ElectronicHealthRecordIncentiveProgram.html
IA January 2011 http://www.ime.state.ia.us/Providers/EHRIncentives.html
ID Fall 2011 http://www.MedicaidEHR.dhw.idaho.gov
IL late Spring 2011 http://www.hie.illinois.gov/ehrincentives/
IN Mid-2011 http://provider.indianamedicaid.com/general-provider-services/ehr-incentive-program.aspx
KS June 2011 http://www.khpa.ks.gov/hite/default.htm
KY January 2011 http://chfs.ky.gov/dms/EHR.htm
LA January 2011 http://www.lamedicaid.com/provweb1/EHR/EHRIndex.htm
MA Unknown No State URL Known
MD Unknown http://mhcc.maryland.gov/electronichealth/electronichealth.html
ME August 2011 http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/oms/HIT/index.html
MI January 2011 http://michiganhealthit.org/
MN Fall 2011 http://www.health.state.mn.us/e-health/hitech.html
MO February 2011 http://www.dss.mo.gov/mhd/ehr/
MP Unknown No State URL Known
MS January 2011 http://ms.arraincentive.com/
MT Spring 2011 http://medicaidprovider.hhs.mt.gov/providerpages/ehrincentives.shtml
NC January 2011 http://www.ncdhhs.gov/dma/provider/ehr.htm
ND February 2011 http://www.healthit.nd.gov/medicaid
NE Fall 2011 http://www.dhhs.ne.gov/med/EHR.htm
NH Winter 2011/2012 http://www.NHMedicaidHIT.org
NJ Unknown No State URL Known
NM Unknown http://www.hsd.state.nm.us/mad/MeiPP.html
NV Summer 2011 https://dhcfp.nv.gov/EHRIncentives.htm
NY September 2011 http://www.health.ny.gov/regulations/arra/department_of_health_programs.htm#health_it
OH Unknown http://grc.osu.edu/MPIP
OK January 2011 http://www.okhca.org/EHR-incentive
OR Summer 2011 http://www.oregon.gov/DHS/mhit/incentive.shtml
PA Unknown http://www.dpw.state.pa.us/provider/healthcaremedicalassistance/medicalassistancehealthinformationtechnologyinitiative/index.html
PR Unknown
RI June 2011 http://www.dhs.ri.gov/Portals/0/Uploads/Documents/Public/MA_Providers/ehr_incentive_prg.pdf
SC January 2011 http://hit.scdhhs.gov/hit/
SD Fall 2011 http://www.dss.sd.gov/medicalservices/incentiveprogram/
TN January 2011 http://www.tn.gov/tenncare/hitech.html
TX January 2011 http://www.tmhp.com/Pages/HealthIT/HIT_Home.aspx
UT September 2011 http://health.utah.gov/medicaid/provhtml/HIT.htm
VA Fall 2011 http://dmasva.dmas.virginia.gov/Content_pgs/pr-arra.aspx
VI Unknown No State URL Known
VT Unknown http://hcr.vermont.gov/cms_meaningful_use
WA April 2011 http://hrsa.dshs.wa.gov/MedicaidHealthCareReform/IT.shtml
WI Unknown http://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/ehrincentive/
WV Unknown No State URL Known
WY Summer 2011 http://www.wyominghit.com/

As of December 15, 2010.