Health IT Pulse

Apr 22 2010   10:28AM GMT

Not there yet: CMS still toiling away on final meaningful use regulations

JeanD Profile: JeanD

Meaningful use

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) continues to shape a couple thousand comments into a final rule governing the meaningful use of health IT — but it’s not finished yet.

The agency has finished cataloging all the comments it received on the proposed rule, and is preparing the draft to go through a clearance process, according to Tony Trenkle, director of CMS’ Office of e-Health Standards and Services. He provided a progress update to the Health Information Technology Policy Committee during its April 21 meeting.

The major issues revealed in the comments have been categorized so that officials can address them and determine what, if any changes need to be made to the language of the proposed rule. The center will be working “over the next several months” to complete the draft, with the hope of releasing the final rule in late spring, Trenkle said.

Among some of the key issues the CMS has categorized are concerns about stages 2 and 3 of the rollout of meaningful use, and the presence of administrative and billing transactions in the regulation. Many in their comments considered it inappropriate that the regulation include those types of transactions, according to Trenkle.

In addition, Congress officials have signaled their dissatisfaction with the proposed rule and have asked for meaningful use criteria to be pared back. The CMS is meeting with several members of Congress in the next week to discuss the proposed rule.

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