U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), chair of the Senate Health Committee, expressed Oct. 6 that stage 3 of the electronic health records (EHR) program is being rushed, causing “a disservice to more than 500,000 doctors, thousands of hospitals, and millions of patients."
With Stage 2 of the EHR program, which started in 2014, healthcare providers must be able to improve patient care using specific criteria that is an upgrade from the previous Stage 1 set of criteria. The Administration is currently working to push the ruling of Stage 3 of the EHR program, prompting Alexander and Senate Commerce Committee Chairman John Thune (R-SD) to write a letter insisting that the Administration not only ensure that Stage 2 is fully adopted, but they are also asking the Administration to delay the finalization of the Stage 3 ruling until January 1, 2017.
“Instead of taking the time to get the stage 3 rule right, [the Administration has] rushed ahead when only 12 percent of doctors and less than 40 percent of hospitals can comply with the program’s stage 2," Alexander told Patient Daily.
Alexander also said that the Administration has failed to answer a number of questions.
"We asked, ‘Why spend a year modifying rushed up mistakes? Why not spend a year getting it right in the first place?'" he said. "They listened but they did not hear. They’ve missed a golden opportunity to develop bipartisan support in Congress and throughout the country for an electronic health records system that would genuinely help patients. Instead, they’ve rushed ahead with a rule against the advice of some of the nation’s leading medical institutions and physicians."
Another 116 House of Representatives members also sent a letter to the Administration, echoing Alexander's sentiments.
Lawmakers request delay in Stage 3 EHR program
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