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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Reported Breaches of 500 or More Individuals up to 93 and Affecting Over 2.5 Million Individuals; Enforcement and Penalties

As of Friday, June 4, 2010, 93 breaches affecting 500 or more individuals have been reported on the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) Web site. The total number affected has gone beyond 2-1/2 million individuals today, and stands at 2,565,352 individuals. Of the 87 breaches involving breach of hard copy or electronic protected health information, 26% involve hard copy or paper records and 74% records on electronic media or devices. Overall, 71% of the 93 breaches involve theft or loss of records, many of which might have been avoided by appropriate securing of hard copy records and electronic media and devices. Below we remind readers of the Department of Health…

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FTC Delays Enforcement of FTC Red Flags Rule Fifth Time

The original FTC Red Flags Rule compliance date deadline was extended three times from the original date of November 1, 2008, with an expected compliance date of November 1, 2009.  Just prior to that date, the FTC extended for the fourth time the deadline for compliance to June 1, 2010.  On May 28, 2010, the June 1, 2010, compliance date was extended a fifth time to December 31, 2010[1]: “At the request of several Members of Congress, the Federal Trade Commission is further delaying enforcement of the ‘Red Flags’ Rule through December 31, 2010, while Congress considers legislation that would affect the scope of entities covered by the Rule.  Today’s…

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