The College of Healthcare Information Management Executives, an influential group comprising 1,400 CIOs and other I.T. leaders, is recommending a delay in Stage 2 electronic health records meaningful use compliance.

"CHIME believes that it would not be prudent to move to Stage 2 until about 30 percent of eligible hospitals and eligible providers have been able to demonstrate EHR MU under Stage 1," according to a comment letter sent to federal officials. "We believe this approach would strike a reasonable balance between the desire to push EHR adoption and MU as quickly as possible, and the recognition that unreasonable expectations could end up discouraging EHR adoption if providers conclude that it will be essentially impossible for them to qualify for incentives."

The HITECH Act, the organization notes, does not mandate when the second stage should start. Delaying Stage 2 also would give regulators more time to develop clear policies and give CIOs more time to introduce and manage change in their organizations, according to CHIME. "Even well-intentioned efforts must recognize that the staff and physicians need a clear vision of the future and time to absorb and adjust to the changes."

The organization also recommends that Stage 2 continue the core and menu set structure of Stage 1. It believes core measures of Stage 2 should be those already in the first stage with increased compliance levels for some measures, while the menu set would be new.

Click here for CHIME's comment letter.

--Joseph Goedert

 

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