CCHIT finalizes 2009-10 testing criteria, but must wait for HHS

Even as it waits for the federal government to complete some necessary work stipulated by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the the Certification Commission for Healthcare Information Technology has published its final 2009-10 EHR certification criteria. However, the commission will delay testing under the new rules until it is able to review the draft standards and certification criteria that the government's HIT Standards Committee must deliver to HHS by Aug. 26. Those standards will help determine which EHR products are eligible for stimulus-related federal subsidies.

According to several published reports, the new "Concise Guide to CCHIT Criteria" ties the commission's criteria to likely ARRA EHR qualifications, though the commission has held off on a few decisions until the government defines "meaningful use" and other key rules for EHR users to qualify for stimulus funding. Notably, the CCHIT Certification Handbook will not be out until later in the summer and the commission is piloting a program to certify other forms of in-use technologies that have not previously been certified. These include open-source software, home-grown systems and best-of-breed deployments, according to HealthLeaders Media.

For more details about the new CCHIT criteria and all the ARRA-related issues:
- read the coverage in Modern Healthcare (reg req)
- see this Health Leaders Media story
- go right to the source for the "Concise Guide to CCHIT Criteria" and the actual criteria