The American Health Information Management Association is advising HHS' Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology to tread carefully on issues such as privacy when finalizing Stage 2 criteria for the government's meaningful-use incentive payment program.
AHIMA airs concerns about Stage 2 criteria
In a letter to the ONC's acting director of meaningful use, Joshua Seidman, AHIMA listed its comments and recommendations for Stage 2 (PDF). Specifically, the association said, final criteria should address redisclosure laws, which vary from state to state and can make health information exchange difficult, as well as patients' right to control the privacy and security of their health information.
Additionally, AHIMA recommended that government take into account other initiatives that have similar deadlines, and the burden these might place on providers.
“AHIMA urges the HIT Policy Committee to consider the current regulatory environment as the year 2013 draws near,” the association said in the letter. “There are a number of other regulatory initiatives developing with a compliance timeframe of 2013 and we suggest aligning these programs to allow for a coordinated approach to implementation and production.”
In the letter, AHIMA also addressed specific draft criteria with suggestions on wording, clarity and scope. For instance, for one of the draft Stage 2 criteria, which would require that patients can download and view information about a clinical encounter within 24 hours, AHIMA instead suggested that the ONC retain the Stage 1 three-day window, calling the proposed timeframe “unrealistic.”
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