News Feature | April 4, 2014

Healthcare IT News For VARs

By Megan Williams, contributing writer

Healthcare IT News For VARs

ICD-10 is delayed — implementation is now extended to Oct. 1, 2015. Also in the news, HIMSS reports two-thirds of hospitals are increasing their 2014 IT budgets, and the HHS offers a new HIPAA Compliance Assessment Tool.

ICD-10 Delay: H.R. Bill 4302 Passes

H.R. Bill 4302 — Protecting Access to Medicare, which extends the implementation of ICD-10 one year to October 1, 2015, was passed by the House of Representatives, according to Health and Data Management. This comes as welcome news to the AMA, which has opposed the move to the new code set. 

HIMSS Reports Two-Thirds Of Hospitals Increasing 2014 IT Budgets

The 25th annual HIMSS Leadership Survey reveals that two-thirds of hospitals are increasing their IT budgets for 2014. The survey outlines that more than 90 percent of hospital leaders questioned, have already qualified for meaningful use. It also reports increased success in government efforts to accelerate IT growth in healthcare. The report includes survey results around topics such as: ICD-10, the impact of IT on patient care, clinical involvement in IT, security, organizational infrastructure, IT governance, senior IT executive responsibility, external responsibilities, and consumer attitudes on health information technology.

Rising Cost Of DHA EHRs-An Opportunity For VARs?

iHealthBeat reports that the cost of the Defense Health Agency's (DHA) EHRs has jumped 2,223 percent since 2002. Their system — the Theater Medical Information Program-Joint, Increment 2 — is now estimated to cost $67.7 million. Federal officials have attributed the cost to multiple factors, including:

  • New requirements necessary to meet the needs of those in combat
  • Operation and maintenance costs
  • Performance abilities intended to be included in a future edition of the EHR system

HHS Offers HIPAA Compliance Assessment Tool

A Health IT Outcomes article highlights the Security Risk Assessment (SRA) Tool, meant to help providers in small to medium offices conduct risk assessments. "By conducting these risk assessments, healthcare providers can uncover potential weaknesses in their security policies, processes and systems. Risk assessments also help providers address vulnerabilities, potentially preventing health data breaches or other adverse security events. A vigorous risk assessment process supports improved security of patient health data," wrote HHS in a press release.

Healthcare IT Talking Points

In a MedCity News post, Dr. John D. Halamka talks communicating with legislators about ICD-10 preparation and getting an early start on ICD-11. "Technically, Oct. 1st, 2015 is not the new date, it is the earliest date.  We could lobby our legislators to rescind the move to ICD-10 altogether and work towards ICD-11 in 2018."

For more news and insights, visit BSMinfo's Healthcare IT Resource Center.