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Meaningful Use and Certification of Health Information Technology: What About Safety?

5 Pages Posted: 26 Oct 2010 Last revised: 5 Feb 2014

Sharona Hoffman

Case Western Reserve University School of Law

Andy Podgurski

Case Western Reserve University

Date Written: October 25, 2010

Abstract

Health information technology (HIT) is becoming increasingly prevalent in medical offices and facilities. Like President George W. Bush before him, President Obama announced a plan to computerize all Americans’ medical records by 2014. Computerization is certain to transform American health care, but to ensure that its benefits outweigh its risks, the federal government must provide appropriate oversight.

President Obama’s stimulus legislation, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), dedicated $27 billion to the promotion of health information technology. It provides payments of up to $44,000 per clinician under the Medicare incentive program and $63,750 per clinician under the Medicaid program.

In the summer of 2010, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) published three sets of regulations to implement ARRA. This article briefly describes and critiques the regulations, arguing that (1) they fail to appropriately address HIT safety and (2) further steps must be taken to protect patients and serve public health needs in the new digital era.

Keywords: Health information technology (HIT), Electronic health records, National Health Information Network, regulation, “Meaningful Use,” certification criteria, electronic medical records, certification bodies

JEL Classification: K23, K32

Suggested Citation

Hoffman, Sharona and Podgurski, Andy, Meaningful Use and Certification of Health Information Technology: What About Safety? (October 25, 2010). Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics Supplement, Vol. 77, Spring 2011; Case Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2010-34. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1697587

Sharona Hoffman (Contact Author)

Case Western Reserve University School of Law ( email )

11075 East Boulevard
Cleveland, OH 44106-7148
United States
216-368-3860 (Phone)

Andy Podgurski

Case Western Reserve University ( email )

10900 Euclid Ave.
Cleveland, OH 44106
United States

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