Interoperability gets a boost! Healthcare 3.0 and Meaningful Use Stage 3

I’ve often talked about Healthcare going through a paradigm shift these past few years. In summarizing the discussion that I had the opportunity to have with students at Miami University last week, when we discussed the what we called Healthcare 3.0. We will review more about MU Stage 3 in the weeks to come in this blog and I’ll also get some feedback in the future from guest bloggers as well. I thought about this as I reviewed the recently released final rules for Meaningful Use Stage 3 by CMS as they said would simplify the requirements and add some flexibilities for providers in order to make, electronic health information available, from what they have mentioned, “when and where it matters most”. The phrase that CMS used which said  that they wanted to shift the paradigm so health IT becomes a tool for care improvement, not an end in itself” really resonated with me and give some impetus to the focus moving forward which would be for healthcare providers and patients to be able to readily, safely, and securely exchange health information.

What CMS said was that they had received feedback from “physicians and other providers” about the challenges they faced in making these technologies work well for their practices and for their patient population so in being able to recognize these concerns, the regulations that they have come up with, apparently make drastic changes to the current requirements by making reporting less of a burden for providers and being able to support interoperability as well as improving patient outcomes. 

CMS has also mentioned that they are “encouraging providers’ to let them know if they are having difficulties with or switching their EHR vendor by applying for exemptions or experienced challenges due to the timing of the rules and EHR implementation. In addition, the new rules will apparently help in the development of new, “user-friendly” technologies, allowing individuals easier access to their healthcare information so they can be better engaged and empowered in their healthcare as we move forward towards, what Victor Simha and I presented last week at Miami University, Healthcare 3.0.

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