Although they have not been officially certified by organizations federally authorized to do so, representatives from the Massachusetts e-Health Institute said the 10 electronic health-record system vendors it listed as offering "technology products that comply with federal requirements" should have no problem eventually achieving certification status.
"We selected these folks based on a number of criteria," MeHI Director Rick Shoup said. "We vetted them."
MeHI spokeswoman Bridget Scrimenti added that the listed vendors have offered guarantees to their customers that their products will be certified and "are committed to complying with requirements."
Eighteen organizations and companies were also identified to serve as "certified implementation and optimization organizations" being contracted by MeHI in its role as a federally funded regional extension center to advise healthcare providers on adopting EHR systems. In an effort to avoid confusion with federal EHR certification programs, Scrimenti said in an e-mail that MeHI will stop using the term “certified” and will now classify these entities as “selected implementation and optimization organizations.”
Two of the selected companies, eClinicalWorks and e-MDs, are EHR vendors, but Shoup said it will be their "service arms" that act as IOOs and that there will be MeHI staff oversight so these companies will not be paid merely to advise providers on how to install the EHRs that they sold them.
"They're not going out and doing this unsupervised," Shoup said, explaining that MeHI staffers familiar with the health IT landscape will be serving as project managers and "clinical relationship managers."
"All our folks have clinical HIT experience," Shoup said.