It’s only natural that providers and patients want to be confident about the EHR products and systems they use. They should be secure and able to maintain data confidentially; work with other systems to share information; and perform a set of well-defined functions. To ensure EHRs being implemented to meet Meaningful Use requirements demonstrate these criteria, the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) is selecting qualified entities to serve as EHR certifying bodies.
Under this temporary certification program, an organization must submit an application to ONC to demonstrate its competency and ability to test and certify Complete EHRs and/or EHR Modules. Self-audits and additional documentation are required as well as the successful completion of a proficiency exam. A permanent certification program is expected to be announced in the next few months and in place by 2012.
As of the date of this post, there are three firms approved by the government to test and certify EHR systems:
- Certification Commission for Health Information Technology
- Drummond Group, Inc.
- InfoGard Laboratories, Inc.
All three are authorized to test and certify complete EHR and/or EHR Modules.
When will more be on the way? It’s hard know. But it’s easy to find out when others have been added by keeping an eye on this link: ONC-Approved Testing and Certifying Bodies.