EHRs, Interoperability and MACRA

ehr interoperabilityRecently, the American Academy of Family Physicians recommended to The Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) that interoperability measures be more patient-centric in order to forward care coordination and continuity. At the ONC’s Annual meeting on May 31st it was said by Epic Vice President that the concept of interoperability needs to be widened to include “interoperability of knowledge” which he feels are methods to determine which of the vast amounts of data are actually important. Other attendees stated that they feel that The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is on the right path with MACRA and interoperability.

The purpose of the Meaningful Use Program was to encourage physicians and hospitals to adopt Electronic Health Record technology and while the incentives have met the limited goal of increasing the use of EHRs, there still exist challenges due to ongoing problems with interoperability among EHR systems. MACRA requires the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to establish metrics by July 1, 2016, for measuring how hospitals and providers move forward toward the goal of widespread interoperability of EHR systems.

The Healthcare Information and Management System Society (HIMSS) and the Personal Connected Health Alliance (PCHA) have also suggested CMS expand its scope in interoperability measures under the new MACRA legislation. Both agree that patient access to medical data needs to be in the forefront and included in any metrics. They would like to see data metrics for how data is used, not just how it is exchanged and other metrics for sending e-prescriptions, incoming lab and imaging results, and immunization registries.

As the definition of interoperability, the metrics of interoperability, the requirements of interoperability, and the governing bodies of interoperability all get laid down, it is important as a medical provider to have an EHR that is compliant, flexible and up to date. Products such as Greenway PrimeSuite and Medisoft offer the features you need to meet interoperability requirements. Be sure to contact the experts at Microwize at 800-955-0321. They can help your practice.