Six weeks after posting an initial batch of 24 public comments on the proposed meaningful use rule on a government Web site for public viewing, the Department of Health and Human Services has posted another 83 comments. The comment period ends on March 15. Here's a sample of some of the new comments:

* "I endorse a majority of the proposed rules for the electronic health record incentive program. I am encouraged to see that CMS is helping to bring technology to health care to provide better services, tracking, and transparency to health care. I disagree with the section on physician order entry. To help make the move to electronic use, the entire medical team needs to be involved. As there are only services that can be provided by the physician and not the staff, it becomes onerous to insist that the clerical duty of computerized physician order entry be required to be by the provider, and not include the staff. This will slow the flow within the office and diminish the access to patient care by insisting that a clerical duty of data input for order entry be performed by the provider. To improve the quality of care and the access, I strongly encourage the use of the entire medical team, with oversight by the physician, to utilize the order entry function. I think this one area will become a large obstacle for the typical small offices, and be a hurdle for the intent of the electronic health record incentive program."

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