ONC Releases Draft Test Scenario To Gauge EHR Systems' Usability

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT has released the first draft test scenario for assessing the real-world usability of electronic health record systems under Stage 2 of the meaningful use program, Modern Healthcare reports.

Under the 2009 federal economic stimulus package, health care providers who demonstrate meaningful use of certified EHR systems can qualify for Medicaid and Medicare incentive payments.

About the Test Scenarios

The use of test scenarios is optional. EHR vendors are not required to pass the test scenarios for their systems to receive certification under the meaningful use program.

The first draft test scenario evaluates the ability of EHR systems to receive information -- such as a medication and allergy lists -- from an outside source.

According to an ONC release, the first draft test scenario aims to ensure that EHR systems can achieve "a clinically plausible test flow" of data (Conn, Modern Healthcare, 2/6).

Comment Period, Future Releases

The agency is accepting public comments on the first draft test scenario. Comments can be submitted to certification@hhs.gov (Durben Hirsch, FierceEMR, 2/6).

ONC plans to develop additional test scenarios in the future (Modern Healthcare, 2/6).

Source: iHealthBeat, Thursday, February 7, 2013

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