Dentists: Don’t Forget HIPAA Compliance

Since the inception of HIPAA in 1996, its broad implications have affected all areas of health care including dentistry. And, if asked, most dentists and their staff would say they know what the HIPAA regulations are, and yes, they have been trained, but are they really up to date with HIPAA’s ever expanding changes and compliance requirements?  Are they trained in the areas of HIPAA Security, Privacy, Enforcement and Breach Notification Rules and do they know that they must be in compliance with the 2013 HIPAA Omnibus Final Rule by September 23, 2013? Compared to the ever-growing size of medical practices today, most dental offices are still rather small with…

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ONC Touts its 10 Step Plan for Meeting Meaningful Use Privacy and Security Attestation Requirements

In a recent Tweet, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) stated:  “Move into the 21st Century and check out the Privacy & Security 10-Step Plan before you implement an Electronic Health Record.”  ONC makes the following recommendation to an Eligible Professional (EP) covered entity participating in the Medicare and Medicaid Financial Incentive Program for Adoption and Meaningful Use of Certified Electronic Health Record (EHR) Technology:  “An EP must meaningfully use certified EHR technology for an EHR reporting period, and then attest to CMS [the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services] that he or she has met meaningful use for that period.  Start your 10-step process at…

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ONC Publishes Stage 2 EHR Technology Certification Criteria NPRM

On March 7, 2012, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) published in the Federal Register its notice of proposed rule making (NPRM) entitled Health Information Technology:  Standards, Implementation Specifications, and Certification Criteria for Electronic Health Record [EHR] Technology, 2014 Edition; Revisions to the Permanent Certification Program for Health Information Technology [pp. 13832-13885].  Comments to HHS may be made until 5 PM on May 7, 2012. The summary of the NPRM is included here: “Under section 3004 of the Public Health Service Act, the Secretary of Health and Human Services is proposing to revise the initial set…

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HHS Extends Life of Temporary EHR Technology Certification Program

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) published a notice in the Thursday, November 3, 2011, Federal Register that extends the life of the “temporary certification program for health information technology” beyond its expected sunset date of December 31, 2011, to at least summer 2012.  “We believe that the sunset of the temporary certification programs [ONC-Authorized Testing and Certification Bodies (ATCBs)] should be tied to the effective date of the final rule that we intend to issue in summer 2012, which is expected to adopt new and revised standards, implementation specifications, and certification criteria for EHR technology in…

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Permanent HIT Certification Final Rule Published by ONC in Federal Register

January 7, 2011.  The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) published today in the Federal Register the final rule for Establishment of the Permanent Certification Program for Health Information Technology (HIT), available online.  This regulation is effective on February 7, 2011.  According to the January 3, 2011, HHS News Release, “[t]he temporary  certification program, established through a final rule published on June 24, 2010, will continue in effect until it sunsets on December 31, 2011, or at a later date when the processes necessary for the permanent certification program to operate are completed. ONC expects to stand-up the programmatic…

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EHR Incentive and Certification Criteria Final Rules Published in Federal Register

The EHR Incentive and Certification final rules were published in the Federal Register this morning, July 28, 2010.  HIPAA.com provides the title, summary, effective date, and URL for each below. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, “42 CFR Parts 412, 413, 422, and 495;  Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Electronic Health Record Incentive Program; Final Rule, Federal Register, 75(144), Wednesday, July 28, 2010, pp. 44313-44588. Summary:  This final rule implements the provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA)(Public Law 111-5) that provide incentive payments to eligible professionals (EPs), eligible hospitals and critical access hospitals (CAHs) participating in Medicare and Medicaid programs…

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Final Rules for EHR Incentives and Certification Criteria at OMB for Review

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) received in early July for Executive Order (EO) 12866 Regulatory Planning and Review two Final Rules relating to electronic health record (EHR) incentives and certification criteria required under the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH Act) that was enacted on February 17, 2009 as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. On Friday, July 2, 2010, OMB received from the Office of the Secretary at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for review Health Information Technology:  Initial Set of Standards, Implementation Specifications, and Certification Criteria for Electronic Health Record Technology; Final Rule.  The Interim Final…

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ONC Releases Final Rule for Temporary HIT Certification Program

On Friday afternoon, June 18, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released the final rule:  Establishment of the Temporary Certification Program for Health Information Technology.   The final rule can be viewed in portable document format (pdf) online at:  http://www.federalreigster.gov/…. The final rule will be published in the Federal Register, most likely next week, and will be effective upon date of publication. The summary of the final rule is reproduced here: “This final rule establishes a temporary certification program for the purposes of testing and certifying health information technology.  This final rule is established under the…

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Final Rule on EHR Certification Programs Imminent

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) completed its review of the Proposed Establishment of Certification Programs for Health Information Technology final rule on June 14, 2010, so publication in the Federal Register is imminent.  This final rule explains the proposed establishment of certification programs for voluntary certification of health information technology, as specified in section 3001(c)(5) of the HITECH Act, which is available on the hipaa.com site.  This final rule is a follow-on to the proposed rule of the same title that was published in the Federal Register on March 10, 2010 (75 Federal Register 11327-11373), the summary of which appears below. “Under the authority granted to the National…

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HHS Publishes Proposed Rule for Electronic Health Record Incentive Program

HHS published today in the Federal Register:  “Medicare and Medicaid Programs–Electronic Health Record Incentive Program; Proposed Rule.”  75 FR 1844-2011.  Comments on this Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) may be submitted to HHS no later than March 15, 2010.  Here is the Summary from the NPRM: “This proposed rule would implement the provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA)(Public Law 111-5) that provide incentive payments to eligible professionals (EPs) and eligible hospitals participating in Medicare and Medicaid programs that adopt and meaningfully use certified electronic health record (EHR) technology.  The proposed rule would specify the initial criteria an EP and eligible hospital must meet in order…

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