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Welcome to HIMSS' Health IT Policy Update, bringing you the latest news on legislative and regulatory activities related to health IT from HIMSS' Government Relations office. We welcome your feedback, and if you're reading this complimentary newsletter online or receiving it as a forward, please subscribe.

Federal Affairs

CMS Extends 2013 EHR Attestation Deadline for EPs, Offers Attestation Assistance to Hospitals
On Friday, February 7, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) took steps to address challenges with the Meaningful Use Attestation process.  Click the link for details.

Health IT Policy Committee Resumes Discussion on Meaningful Stage 3 Requirements
On Tuesday, February 4, 2014, the Health IT Policy Committee received an update from its Meaningful Use Workgroup with preliminary recommendations on what should be included in Meaningful Use Stage 3.  Click the link to learn more about the recommendations.

EHR Incentive Program Data for December 2013 Released
The Health IT Policy Committee met on February 4, 2014, for its monthly meeting, and received reports from the CMS and the ONC for Health IT on EHR adoption.  For more information about the December program data click the link above.

DoD and VA Seek EHR Input
This week the Department of Defense (DoD) and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) issued notices seeking input on modernizing their electronic health records (EHRs).  To learn more, click the link above.

HHS Releases Final Rule on Patients’ Access to Lab Test Reports
This week, three agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released the much-anticipated Final Rule that amends the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments of 1988 (CLIA) regulations to specify that laboratories subject to CLIA may provide patients with copies of their completed test reports. Click the link about to learn more about the final rule.

ONC Seeking Applicants for HITSC and HITPC
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) announced that it is seeking applications to fill vacant positions on its Federal Advisory Committees (FACAs). For information and to participate, click the link above.

Inspector General Releases Workplan; Includes Mobile and Medical Devices
The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) released its 2014 workplan this month. The workplan includes two items of interest focused on portable devices that carry personal health information and networked medical devices in hospitals. Click the link above to learn more.

OIG Marks EHR Progress From Nearly $180 million in HRSA Grants
On January 29, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)’ Office of the Inspector General (OIG), issued a report, “Progress in Electronic Health Record Implementation Through HRSA Grants to Health Center Controlled Networks.” For more details on the content of the report, click the link above.

Healtheway Releases Exchange Survey, Shows Uptick in Participation
Healtheway, a non-profit organization providing operational support to the eHealth Exchange (formerly the NwHIN), released data from its annual survey showing a significant increase in the level of participation in the eHealth Exchange. For more information about the Healtheway survey, click the link above.

CDC Addresses HIMSS Government Relations Roundtable
On Monday, Associate Director of Informatics in the Division of Informatics and Surveillance at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Nedra Garrett, spoke to the HIMSS Government Relations Roundtable (HGRR). To learn about CDC’s presentation and how you can participate in future HGRR events, click the link above.

Congressional Affairs

Key Congressional Committees Reach Major Agreement on Permanent SGR Fix
The Senate Finance Committee, House Energy and Commerce Committee and House Ways and Means Committee have reportedly reached a major agreement on permanent Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) Fix. To read more about the SGR Fix agreement and how it impacts health IT, click the link above.

House Holds Hearings on Protecting Consumer Information Protection
The Committee on Energy and Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade held a hearing on Wednesday, February 5, 2014, titled: “Protecting Consumer Information: Can Data Breaches Be Prevented?”  Click the link above to learn more about the hearing.

Senate Committee Considers Surgeon General Nominee
This week, the Senate HELP Committee held a hearing to consider the President Obama’s U.S. Surgeon General nominee, Vivek Hallegere Murthy, MD, MBA. To learn more about the hearing, click the link above.

Senate Hearing Addresses Data Breach and Cybercrime Prevention
On February 4, 2014, the Senate Committee on the Judiciary, under the leadership of Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Ranking Member Chuck Grassley (R-IA), held a hearing, titled, “Privacy in the Digital Age: Preventing Data Breaches and Combating Cybercrime.” For more information about the hearing, click the link above.

Institute for e-Health Policy video is available for the Health Information Technology 101 Session
Each year the Institute for e-Health Policyholds briefings geared toward new and returning Congressional health staff to provide the latest on evolving health IT policy issues. To learn more about the topics covered in last week’s briefing, click the link above.

House Veterans Affairs Committee Reviews Health IT Support to VA-DoD Care Coordination for Transitioning Veterans
On Wednesday, February 5th, Chairman John Runyan (R-NJ) of the House Veterans Affairs Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs held a hearing to review the status of the Veterans Benefits Administration’s ability to decrease the backlog of veterans benefit claims.  Click the link to learn more about the subcommittee hearing.

State Affairs

HSR Releases REC Study
A study of the Regional Extension Center (REC) Program was released by Health Services Research with an objective to assess the program’s progress towards the goal of supporting over 100,000 providers in small, rural, and underserved practices to achieve meaningful use (MU) of electronic health records (EHRs). For more information about the survey, click the link above.

NASHP Covers Privacy & Security Policies across the States
The National Academy for State Health Policy has generated a list of state level health IT privacy and security policy. The report covers 25 states at this time and includes information on state privacy and security boards, opt-in or opt-out rules, privacy and security initiatives, legislative and executive branch collaborations, legal work groups, and more. Click the link to learn more.

Vermont REC Releases 2013 Annual Report
The Vermont Information Technology Leaders (VITL), the state’s regional extension center (REC), recently released the VITL 2013 Annual Report. The report highlights VITL’s accomplishments in 2013. For more information click the link above.


HIMSS Media Future Care Seeks Perspectives on Evolving Healthcare Models
In 2014, HIMSS Media Future Care will focus on the future of healthcare delivery around the globe by showcasing the ideas of more subject matter experts on how providers, payers, patients and policymakers can and should work to transform systems of care.  Future Care’s mission remains to provide a forum for stakeholders and innovators from across the healthcare sector to discuss new and emerging ideas and innovations focused on lowering healthcare costs, enhancing outcomes and improving patient satisfaction with healthcare services around the globe. From Europe to Asia to Africa to the Americas, HIMSS Media Future Care provides news and opinions on the range of efforts underway to make healthcare work better for patients and providers alike. With that goal in mind, experts working across the sector are invited to share your ideas with a global community of colleagues. To learn more, or to propose ideas you’d like to share in this forum, contact Jeff Rowe, Future Care Editor.

Spring 2014 JHIM Seeks Abstracts on ‘Big Data’ and Pop Health Management
The Spring 2014 Journal of Healthcare Information Management will focus on Big Data and Population Health Management. JHIM is seeking abstracts on these and other areas of health IT. JHIM accepts original research, case studies, and literature reviews on any and all topics related to health IT. Please submit a word document with a 250-word synopsis of your paper. Include a working title and contact information for all contributors for the paper. All abstracts will be reviewed and decided upon once the call for abstracts closes. Please e-mail Matt Schlossberg, Manager, Publications, by Wednesday, Feb. 12, at the link above.

HIMSS Annual Call for Committee Volunteers
The HIMSS Annual Call for Committee Volunteers for the 2015-2016 fiscal year is now open through March 6. Serving on a HIMSS Committee is an excellent opportunity for professional development, networking and active engagement around key health IT topics, settings, and constituencies. "HIMSS volunteers share a vision to improve health through the best use of IT. Through robust engagement with more than 7,000 fabulous volunteers involved in our Committees, Task Forces, Roundtables, Chapters, and Work Groups, HIMSS educates and equips all stakeholders for their role in positively transforming the quality, safety, and cost-effectiveness of health and healthcare," says Carla Smith, MA, CNM, FHIMSS, Executive Vice-President. Committee participation is open to all HIMSS members who are not currently serving in other leadership positions within the Society and who have maintained active membership for at least the past 12 consecutive months. If you have questions regarding serving on a Committee please contact Carrie Subelsky.

HIMSS Seeks Innovator in Residence to work with HHS on Patient Data Matching Strategy
Through HHS’s existing “Innovator in Residence” (IIR) program, HIMSS and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services are collaborating to move forward on the creation of a nationwide patient data matching strategy. HIMSS is currently recruiting an IIR to develop a vision, strategy, and implementation plan for the near-term deployment of consistent patient data matching in health that builds on the body of work from HHS’s Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) and healthcare community partners.  The person hired for this two-year opportunity will be a HIMSS employee who will work onsite in the office of the HHS Chief Technology Officer, to foster further collaboration with stakeholders across the healthcare community and in collaboration with ONC. Click the link above to learn more and to apply.

Health IT Policy Update is a weekly online newsletter published by the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS).

Copyright© 2014 Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society.
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without prior written permission. Contact HIMSS Publications at 33 West Monroe Street, Suite 1700, Chicago, IL 60603–5616;

For information on Health IT Policy Update
Elinore Boeke
Sr. Manager, Public Policy Communications, HIMSS
HIMSS Office of Government Relations, 703–562–8817

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The inclusion of an organization name, product or service in this publication should not be construed as a HIMSS endorsement of such organization, product or service, nor is the failure to include an organization name, product or service to be construed as disapproval.

Kick off HIMSS14 with the HIE or Interoperability Symposium
The following two HIMSS Pre-Conference Symposia on Sunday, Feb. 23, allow attendees to dive deep into health information exchange and interoperability.

Delivering on the Promise of HIE: Realizing Value through Innovation!
Walt Disney World Chief Physician Michael Hankins, MD, MPH, will deliver the HIE Symposium opening keynote on the complexities of managing the healthcare of thousands of employees spread all over the world. The closing keynote will feature Jessica Kahn, MPH, and Hunt Blair discussing ways that new and changing public policies are driving innovation in health information exchange. Visit the HIMSS14 site to register!

The Interoperability Explosion: Where We Are and Where We're Headed
Doug Fridsma, MD, PhD, Chief Science Officer and Director of the Office of Science and Technology at the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT will be the Interoperability Symposium keynote with Joyce Sensmeier, Vice President of Informatics at HIMSS. They'll discuss technological progress and encouraging moves toward cooperation that are making interoperability a reality, thanks in large part to the efforts of ONC, HIMSS and IHE USA. Visit the HIMSS14 site to register!

HIMSS Continuity of Care Maturity Model Launch at HIMSS14
Tuesday, February 25, 2014 | 8:30 AM - 9:30 AM ET
HIMSS is pleased to introduce the Continuity of Care Maturity Model, a global model that addresses the importance of interoperability, information exchange, care coordination, patient engagement and analytics with the ultimate goal of holistic individual and population health management. With seven stages that align with the HIMSS Analytics EMRAM maturity model, this model evaluates technology implementation and usage, data collection and analytics, and patient empowerment in optimizing clinical and financial outcomes. This session will take place on Tuesday, Feb. 25, from 8:30 am-9:30 am, (ET). The session will be presented by John P. Hoyt, MHA, FACHE, FHIMSS, HIMSS Analytics.

HIMSS14 Explores Mobile and Wireless Healthcare
Advances in and access to mobile and wireless technologies provide unprecedented opportunities to change patient engagement and the delivery of healthcare globally. This education category at HIMSS14 focuses on critical milestones that are needed to take mobile technologies from present use cases, technical specifications, and pilot demonstrations to full adoption, deployment and convergence, as well as data exchange issues using mobile technologies and workflow issues, spanning the ambulatory setting, the acute setting and other healthcare settings where mobile health technology is leveraged.

Navigate HIMSS14 Like a Pro: Attend Online Orientation Sessions
If you want to learn more about HIMSS14 or have pressing questions you need answered, then attend one of three online, pre-conference orientation presentations. Today’s orientations will feature a presentation for experienced Annual Conference attendees, and a second orientation geared toward professionals who are attending for the first time.  Click the link above for information on recordings of these presentations. On Feb. 12, an orientation will be hosted for professionals who are attending conference virtually. Live on-site orientations will be conducted on Sunday, Feb. 23, and Monday, Feb. 24.

Enhance Your Annual Conference Experience with HIMSS14 Online
If you can’t attend the 2014 Annual HIMSS Conference & Exhibition in Orlando—or, if you are and want an even broader experience—then register for HIMSS14 Online, the interactive, web-based extension of HIMSS14. For only $49, HIMSS14 Online offers attendees access to select portions of the conference, with live content and real-time interaction.

Keeping Data in Motion: How HIPAA Affects Electronic transfer of Protected Health Information. Access Now.

Public Policy Event Calendar

HIMSS Events

Health IT Policy Committee Meetings

Health IT Standards Committee Meetings

Upcoming CMS National Provider Calls

HIMSS Webinar: The HIMSS14 Online Attendee: Getting the Most Out of Your Experience
February 12, 2014

AHRQ TeamSTEPPS Teleconference: "Using the HSOPS to Evaluate the Impact of TeamSTEPPS on Safety Culture"
February 12, 2014

HIMSS Oregon Capitol Visit Day
February 20, 2014

Using Health IT to Improve Coordination in Patients with Complex Care Needs
February 20, 2014

National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics (NCVHS) Full Committee Meeting
February 20-21, 2014

HIMSS14 Conference & Exhibition
Orlando, FL
February 23-27, 2014

HIMSS14 Online
February 24-27, 2014

Utah Healthcare IT Day
February 25, 2014

2014 Colorado HIT Advocacy Day
March 12, 2014

HIMSS Media Webinar: Mission Possible: Health IT and Policy beyond Meaningful Use and ICD-10
April 30, 2014

Government Health IT Conference and Exhibition
Washington, DC
June 17-18, 2014

National Health IT Week
September 15-19, 2014

Save the Date!
HIMSS 13th Annual Policy Summit
Grand Hyatt Washington DC
September 17-18, 2014

Renew Your HIMSS Membership?

Ensure the continuation of your HIMSS member benefits, login to the Member Center to renew your membership today. If you need a paper invoice, request one via e–mail to the Member Services department. You can also renew by phone at 312–664–4467 (option 8, then 2).


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