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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.

Congressional Affairs

Obama Signs SGR ‘Doc Fix’ & ICD-10 Delay
On Tuesday, President Obama signed into law legislation that creates a one-year patch for the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) Medicare physician payment formula, to April 2015. Among many other provisions in the 45-page bill is a delay in the conversion to ICD-10 by one year, to October 2015.

National Coordinator to Open Institute for e-Health Policy Capitol Hill Briefing
The Institute for eHealth Policy will host two briefings this month. On April 10, National Coordination Karen DeSalvo, MD, MPH, MSc, will participate in her first Capitol Hill briefing by providing opening remarks for a session on the value of health data using secure information to improve efficiency and quality. On April 16, panelists from some of the nation’s leading organizations will gather to discuss telehealth implementation barriers in rural and urban America.

HIMSS Public Policy Principles Under Review
Because the technology environment is evolving so quickly, it is often difficult for public policy, legislation, and regulations—at all levels of government—to keep pace.  The HIMSS Public Policy Principles are currently being redrafted by a workgroup of volunteers.  Click the link to learn more.

Key House Members Announce Retirement at the End of this Year
U.S. Representative Dave Camp (R-MI) Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, announced on April 2, 2014, that he will join a growing number of Representatives and Senators who will not seek reelection in the fall.  Click the link for more on those who have announced their retirements.

GAO Calls on Federal Agencies to Enhance Breach Response
the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has released a report on “Information Security: Federal Agencies Need to Enhance Responses to Data Breaches,” noting that “agencies have had mixed results in addressing the eight components of an information security program called for by law, and most agencies had weaknesses in implementing specific security controls.” Click the link for details.

Federal Affairs

HIMSS Issues Recommendations to CMS on MU Stage 2 Implementation
On Monday, HIMSS sent a letter to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) with near-term recommendations to continue moving the Meaningful Use (MU) program forward. HIMSS offered these recommendations to CMS to maximize the number of eligible professionals and eligible hospitals successfully attesting to the program’s requirements using a 2014 certified EHR.

CMS and ONC Release Testing Tool “Bonnie” for CQMs
On Tuesday, April 1, 2014, a new testing tool, “Bonnie,” was released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC). Designed for measure developers, this tool will be “used to provide specific feedback on the behavior of the CQM logic.” Two training sessions will be held April 7th.  Click the link for details.

Security Risk Assessment tool Released by HHS
To assist providers with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Security Rule compliance, HHS has announced the release of a new security risk assessment (SRA) tool.

HIMSS Regulatory Chart Tracks Health IT Regulations
The HIMSS regulatory chart offers an at-a-glance snapshot of all health IT-related regulation HIMSS is following in 2014. The chart includes links to proposed and final regulations and to HIMSS comments and position statements, along with anticipated timelines.

State Affairs

California Committee to Hear Cyber Security Commission Measure
The California Assembly Committee on Accountability & Administrative Review will hear Assembly Bill 2200 on April 9, 2014. AB 2200 would create the California Cyber Security Commission, consisting of members comprised of representatives from state, local, and federal government, the Legislature, and private industries.

Florida Hears Measure on Data Breach Reporting
The Florida House Judiciary Committee is scheduled to hear House Bill 7087 during their April 4th meeting. HB 7087 provides an exemption from public records requirements for information received by the Florida Department of Legal Affairs with relation to notices of data breaches. The measure provides a definition for "proprietary business information" and provides for future legislative review & repeal of exemptions. Click the link for details.

Louisiana Introduces Measure to Provide Managed Care & HIE Funding
Louisiana State Senator David Heitmeier introduced Senate Bill 647 on April 1st, which provides for the use of health information exchanges by Medicaid managed care plans.

Florida Committee Votes Favorably on Telemedicine Act
The Florida Senate Communications, Energy, and Public Utilities Committee considered Senate Bill 1646 on April 1, 2014. SB 1646 creates the Florida Telemedicine Act and defines the key components for the practice of telemedicine.

California to Hear Exchange Confidentiality Measures
The California Senate Health Committee will consider Senate Bill 974 on April 9, 2014. The California Assembly Health Committee will consider Assembly bill 1560 on April 22, 2014. These similar measures would prohibit the California Health Benefits Exchange from disclosing an individual’s personal information to third parties for the purpose of determining eligibility for, or enrolling the individual in, health care coverage, unless the Exchange obtains prior written consent. Click the link to learn more.


Volunteer for Health IT Leadership Awards and Congressional Asks Work Groups
This year’s HIMSS Policy Summit will take place on September 17-18, as part of National Health IT Week (September 15-19, 2014).  Each year, Policy Summit activities are made possible through the participation of HIMSS volunteers. Member involvement is crucial in shaping the messages that HIMSS members carry to Capitol Hill during the annual Policy Summit, and in selecting award recipients for the Annual State, Federal, and Congressional Health IT Leadership Awards. Click the link to learn more.

Register Today for the Healthcare Business Intelligence Forum
HIMSS Media and Healthcare IT News announce the Healthcare Business Intelligence Forum, a two-day event focused on best practices for leveraging health data and analytics to improve both clinical and business efficiency of healthcare organizations. The forum will "connect the dots" by demonstrating how the coordination between clinical and business operations can improve overall enterprise performance.  Sessions will provide feet-on-the-ground information from those who are successfully refining their clinical and business models. The forum will be held at the Renaissance Washington Hotel in Washington, D.C. April 16-17, 2014.  For more information and to register, click the link above.

NEW! HIMSS Accountable Care Task Force Seeks Members
The Accountable Care Task Force is accepting members to help create tools and resources providers, hospitals, integrated delivery networks, health plans and other stakeholders need to achieve the industry transition from volume to value based healthcare through Accountable Care Organizations. The meetings are held on the third Wednesday of the month from 2-3 p.m. (ET). To sign up for the Task Force, and to help us get to know each other’s background, skill set and interest, fill out this brief survey. Contact Nancy Devlin for more information.

HIMSS Launching Identity Management Task Force
HIMSS will launch its new Identity Management Task Force (IDM TF) on March 25, 1-2 pm (ET). The HIMSS IDM TF will focus on development of tools and resources that will inform HIMSS members on policy and technical challenges. The HIMSS IDM TF also will serve as a multi-stakeholder industry liaison group representing HIMSS membership with national and industry initiatives on identity management. HIMSS members are invited to share their knowledge, ideas, and thoughts. If you are interested in more information, please email Mike Kroll, Manager, Technology Solutions or Lisa Gallagher, Vice President, Technology Solutions.

NEW! Webinar—Protect Privacy and Leverage De-identified Data for Healthcare Innovation
On May 5, Panelists from Privacy Analytics and the State of Louisiana will demonstrate how organizations with “Big Data” leverage novel approaches to solving complex healthcare problems through open data competitions.

  • Learn about the risk management framework that was utilized to anonymize the data in the State of Louisiana’s “Own your Own Health” initiative. The framework ensures that patients are at a “very small” risk of being re-identified, and that the governance mechanisms that need to be in place for ensuring that stigmatizing analytics are not conducted on the data.
  • Understand the need for policies that support the secure transmission, access, and authentication/authorization of identifiable information for the purposes of clinical decision making.

This webinar is open to all current HIMSS members and is part of The HIMSS Center for Patient and Family Centered Care Webinar series.

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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HIMSS Media Solutions

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.


FDASIA Report Released on Regulating Health IT
On Thursday, April 3, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC), and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released their FDASIA Health IT Report that introduces a proposed strategy for a risk-based regulatory framework for health IT.

Putting Big Data to work. April 16-17, 2014 Renaissance/Washington DC. Click Here to Reserve Your Spot Today.

Public Policy Event Calendar

HIMSS Events

Health IT Policy Committee Meetings

Health IT Standards Committee Meetings

Upcoming CMS National Provider Calls

Florida State HIT Day
Tallahassee, FL
April 7-8, 2014

Meeting of the IOM Committee on Recommended Social and Behavioral Domains and Measures for EHRs
Washington, DC
April 8, 2014

Healthcare Business Intelligence Forum
Washington, DC
April 16-17, 2014

3rd Annual ILHIMA & GCCHIMSS HIE Advocacy Event
Springfield, IL
April 29 & 30, 2014

Government Health IT Virtual Briefing: Mission Possible: Health IT and Policy beyond Meaningful Use and ICD-10
April 30, 2014

California State HIT Day
Sacramento, CA
May 22, 2014

Beacon Hill Day at the State House
Boston, MA
June 5, 2014

Government Health IT Conference and Exhibition
Call for Proposals now open!
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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