When I was reading through the EHR Certification flexibility final rule, I found a really interesting part of the rule (pg.49-50) that describes what CMS sees as the purpose of the HITECH act and all the money their spending on EHR software:
The entire overarching purpose of the EHR Incentive Program is to move providers towards advanced use of health IT to support reductions in cost, increased access, and improved outcomes for patients.
It’s been one of my pet peeves lately. People always come on this site or on social media and say “that goes against the purpose of the HITECH act.” I often would reply, “what is the purpose of the HITECH act?”
My problem with people’s comments about the purpose of all this spending on EHR software is that purpose changes depending on perspective. I’ve written before about the misalignment between “incentives” and “purpose.”
While I think the purpose for something changes based on whose perspective you’re talking about, I think it’s really important to know where CMS is coming from when it comes to the EHR incentive money and meaningful use. Now we know. They made it quite clear in the final rule.
How do you think the EHR incentive money is doing at achieving CMS’ purpose?