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Non-Profit Achieves Meaningful Use For In-House EMR

Posted on October 23, 2013 I Written By

Anne Zieger is veteran healthcare consultant and analyst with 20 years of industry experience. Zieger formerly served as editor-in-chief of and her commentaries have appeared in dozens of international business publications, including Forbes, Business Week and Information Week. She has also contributed content to hundreds of healthcare and health IT organizations, including several Fortune 500 companies. Contact her at @ziegerhealth on Twitter or visit her site at Zieger Healthcare.

Most organizations hoping to achieve Meaningful Use milestones buy their way in, by acquiring certified technology from an established EMR vendor. However, there are still some organizations that are working to create in-house technology that meets Meaningful Use standards.

One such organization, the Massachusetts eHealth Collaborative (MAeHC), recently achieved a nice win by meeting all three Meaningful Use Stage 2 requirements for its in-house-built EMR module, according to a report in Information Week. To meet certification criteria, modular EMRs must use the Quality Reporting Document Architecture Type 1 document to capture and input the data electronically.

MAeHC, a not-for-profit health IT organization, has created a modular EMR for clinical quality measurements (CQM) reporting, which the CCHIT certified to support Meaningful Use Stage 2, IW reports. The MAeHC product, which is hosted in the cloud, integrates with stand-alone EMRs and can span across multiple EMR platforms.

Getting certified was partly a matter of interpreting the criteria for Stage 2, which include capture and export, import and calculate and electronic submission, MAeHC execs told IW.

From the get-go, for example, the first criterion was problematic, as “capture and export” require EMRs to electronically record data and export it using established standards. MAeHC’s EMR has no user interface to manually key in data.

But the group’s leaders were determined to meet all three criteria, and they managed to get all of their issues sorted out. The MAeHC system is now certified for eligible providers and should be certified for eligible hospitals within the next few weeks, according to IW.

Looking at the challenges faced by those that blaze their own EMR trail, it’s interesting to note that two years ago, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center became the first hospital to have its entire home-brewed EMR certified as “complete” by the CCHIT. Considering the resources required, and the tough problems a group like MAeHC faced just to create one module, I’m not surprised that most of its hospital brethren have gone with packaged solutions instead.

Business Intelligence Gets a Boost from popHealth and the MAeHC

Posted on February 9, 2012 I Written By

As Social Marketing Director at Billian, Jennifer Dennard is responsible for the continuing development and implementation of the company's social media strategies for Billian's HealthDATA and Porter Research. She is a regular contributor to a number of healthcare blogs and currently manages social marketing channels for the Health IT Leadership Summit and Technology Association of Georgia’s Health Society. You can find her on Twitter @JennDennard.

I’ve been inundated with two things as of late – HIMSS12 planning and all things business intelligence. I’ve spent the last few weeks helping prepare the Porter Research team for a webinar on providers’ perceptions of business intelligence, which I’m sure will be a big theme at HIMSS. As I’ve been looking over data from the latest Porter Research survey on BI, I’ve realized that providers know they need it but many aren’t quite sure how to define it, what they need out of it, how to implement it, or how to go about making it meaningful for their organization’s particular needs. And vendors in the healthcare space seem to be (or so I thought) just getting into the game of developing these sorts of tools – be they on a departmental or enterprise level.

Micky Tripathi, President and CEO of the Massachusetts eHealth Collaborative (MAeHC) – a nonprofit healthcare IT advisory and consultancy firm – alerted me to an interesting business intelligence tool called popHealth during my recent interview with him for a Porter Research feature on that state’s developing health information exchange. The MAeHC team, which includes among its services the MAeHC Quality Data Center, will be part of the Interoperability Showcase at HIMSS12, and will help to highlight the functionality and accuracy of the popHealth tool.

“popHealth was originally created as an open-source quality measurement tool by the Primary Care Information Project in New York City,” explained Tripathi, “which was headed at the time by Dr. Farzad Mostashari. Now that he’s the national coordinator for health IT, he’s been promoting it at a national level as a free, open-source tool that any organization in the country can use to send their clinical data to and get Meaningful Use clinical quality measures out of.”

Since then, the ONC has contracted with the Mitre Corporation to further develop the platform for a national user base.

You can of course check out the popHealth website for more info, but in a nutshell, the tool is “an open source reference implementation software service that automates the reporting of Meaningful Use quality measures. popHealth integrates with a healthcare provider’s electronic health record (EHR) system using continuity of care records. popHealth streamlines the automated generation of summary quality measure reports on the provider’s patient population.

“popHealth supports healthcare providers and EHR vendors by reporting clinical quality measures from electronic health record continuity of care files. Providers are empowered to better understand, and analyze the health of their patient population, and meet Meaningful Use reporting objectives, through reports of clinical quality measures. EHR vendors and healthcare providers are free to download, use, and integrate the popHealth software in their systems.”

The popHealth team will at HIMSS also to announce the winner of their tool development challenge. Announced last fall, the competition challenges participants to “develop an application that leverages the popHealth open source framework, existing functionality, standards and sample datasets to improve patient care and provide greater insight into patient populations.”

As the need for business intelligence tools and demand for open source solutions grow, I’ll be interested to see if popHealth ushers in a new era of reporting – one that everyone can take advantage of thanks to its non-existent price tag.

Quality Improvement Organization Gets Software ONC-ATCB Certified

Posted on December 21, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of and John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

I’ve been really fascinated to see all the various companies that are becoming ONC-ATCB certified software. I use to call it ONC-ATCB certified EHR, but with all these health IT companies becoming certified I don’t think we should be calling them EHR. They certainly support and connect with EHR software, but they aren’t EHR software per se.

I previously posted about a Data Warehouse Company being ONC-ATCB certified and a Patient Portal Achieving ONC-ATCB Certification. Both interesting use cases for achieving ONC-ATCB certification.

A few weeks ago it was announced that the Massachusetts eHealth Collaborative (MAeHC) has certified their Quality Data Center (QDC) software. As I understand it, MAeHC is a quality improvement organization which makes for another interesting entry into the ONC-ATCB certification space. They seem to have a lot of connections with REC organizations which will be interesting as well.

When you look through the list of requirements that MAeHC met it basically met the required security criteria and then the clinical quality measures. I imagine the real benefit of using this software is for those trying to combine data from multiple EHR systems. I wonder which type of organization we’ll see becoming ONC-ATCB certified next.