HHS announced new federal regulations that will allow hospitals and some other organizations to donate e-prescribing and electronic health records technology and support services to physicians. The regulations create broader exceptions and safe harbors to federal fraud-and-abuse laws, in terms of qualified donors and recipients, than initially proposed last October. The CMS created two exceptions to physician self-referral law allowing hospitals and other organizations to provide physicians with technology and training used predominately for interoperable e-records and solely for e-prescribing. Under safe harbors in anti-kickback law created by HHS' inspector general's office, recipients must cover 15% of the cost of e-records technology and services. "Hospitals, health plans and others will take on an active role in putting (e-records) in the hands of physicians," HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt said at a news conference. With the exceptions, "physicians will have a better chance of getting these sooner," Leavitt said. The final regulations will be published in the Aug. 8 Federal Register . They take effect in 60 days.
HHS unveils safe harbors for IT sharing
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