Healthcare News & Insights

Stage 3 meaningful use recommendations could arrive in August

Many healthcare organizations are probably still trying to comprehend the new Stage 2 requirements for meaningful use of electronic health records – and in fact, many are still struggling to meet the requirements in Stage 1. However, the rules for Stage 3 of meaningful use could be right around the corner. 

Stage 3 may not affect providers and hospitals for a while — after all, a final rule for Stage 2 hasn’t even been issued yet — but the feds are beginning to prepare the new set of requirements. The Meaningful Use Work Group of the federal Health IT Policy Committee is planning to issue recommendations for a proposal by August 1.

That way, a Request for Comment can be issued in November, with the recommendations being published next May.

What are the recommendations for a Stage 3 meaningful use rule likely to include? During a July 3 meeting, the work group discussed a proposal requiring hospitals and providers to use an EHR system that tracks individual care goals, as well as allows greater collaboration between a patients’ various doctors and the sharing of information when a patient transitions from one facility to another.

If that ends up being the focus of the Stage 3 meaningful use requirements, it will continue a trend started in the Stage 2 proposal of promoting the use of health IT in ways that allow doctors to work together and improve a patient’s total care.

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