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AMA’s top 9 list includes focus on health IT

By: Lisa Marlin

January 12, 2016

This month the American Medical Association (AMA) released a list of the nine top issues they believe physicians should watch in the coming year and why, and what the AMA is doing to address the issues. All nine can be found in the AMA Wire, but we’re just going to look at the two that call out health IT.

 #2.  EHR meaningful use program. This burdensome regulatory program is scheduled to move forward next year, following the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) release of the meaningful use Stage 3 final rule late in 2015. The medical community immediately called on policymakers to put physicians back in control of their practices and put patients before bureaucracy after the rule was released and will continue these efforts this year.

The AMA’s grassroots campaign Break The Red Tape is calling for physician-led and patient-focused medicine and pressing for a reset of Stage 3. Recommendations for the reset seek to alleviate meaningful use burdens and revise the program to improve flexibility, expand patient engagement and clear the way for increased health IT interoperability and innovation.

 #8.  Health data security. Threats to health data security have been increasing over the past two years. A study found that 81 percent of health IT executives reported cyberattacks in that time span. Such endangerment of health data is expected to increase this year. With such private information so vulnerable to attack, appropriate protections for sharing and data storage must be a focal point for health IT. The AMA is working with the federal government to ensure better protections for health information.

“Indeed,” says David Ginsberg, president of PrivaPlan Associates, “Congress responded in part to concerns raised by the AMA and many others by passing legislation that allows a blanket exemption to the 2017 Medicare MU payment adjustments (for failing to reach MU), provided eligible professionals/hospitals apply for this exemption.”

PrivaPlan will continue to keep you in the know on these issues. We are experts in HIPAA, as well as in the areas of IT Security, IT Strategic Planning, EHR selection and implementation, Meaningful Use, ICD10, PQRI and IQR.

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