HIMSS EHR Association Fires Back At GOP Senators Calling For MU reboot

Mike Milliard | Government Health IT | May 22, 2013

One month after six Republican Senators published a white paper calling for a new approach to the federal meaningful use incentive program, the HIMSS Electronic Health Record Association has drafted a point-by-point response.

In their April report, "Reboot: Re-examining the Strategies Needed to Successfully Adopt Health IT," GOP Senators John Thune of South Dakota, Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Richard Burr of North Carolina, Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, Mike Enzi of Wyoming and Pat Roberts of Kansas – all of whom voted against the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act when it first came before the Senate in 2009 – expressed concerns about the $35 billion allocated for health IT adoption as part of the stimulus bill.

They took issue with what they said is paltry progress on system interoperability so far, raised alarms about unnecessary billing enabled by EHRs, sought better oversight of the MU program, called for more stringent patient privacy protections and wondered about the chances for long-term health IT sustainability.