Health Information Management

ONC to release documents to support final rule for EHRs

HIM-HIPAA Insider, October 26, 2015

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by Nicole Votta, Associate Editor

In the wake of ONC’s release of the 2015 Edition Health IT Certification Criteria final rule for EHRs, Steven Posnack, MS, MHS, ONC director, Office of Standards and Technology, announced in a blog post that the first set of documents to support the 2015 Edition will be released over the next two weeks.

These documents, called Certification Companion Guides (CCG), are meant to help IT developers understand and interpret regulatory requirements more quickly. This will allow developers to focus their resources on product development. ONC plans to release CCGs for each certification criterion, which will include the criterion’s regulatory history, requirements, and clarifications, Posnack said. CCGs will be updated as necessary.

A second set of documents will include draft version of the 2015 Edition Test Procedures for each certification criterion. The documents will be published for stakeholder feedback and a 30-day comment period, and ONC plans to publish test procedures for comment when the associated CCG is published, Posnack said.

Stakeholders who requested earlier availability of testing tools will see ONC respond to their suggestions. “Additionally, over the next few weeks our colleagues at NIST will begin to make available ‘alpha’ versions of 2015 Edition testing tools for early feedback and pilot testing. Earlier availability of test tools was another request we have done our best to respond to for the 2015 Edition,” Posnack said.

CMS and ONC released the final rules October 6. The final rule with comment period gives providers and state Medicaid agencies until January 1, 2018, to comply with new requirements. The final rule for the 2015 Edition Health IT Certification Criteria focuses on interoperability and improving transparency and competition in health IT.

Click here for more information about the rules.

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