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Washington Debrief: CHIME Participates in WH Precision Medicine Event; 2016 MU Spec Sheets are Out

March 7, 2016
by Leslie Kriegstein, Vice President of Congressional Affairs, CHIME
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CHIME Partnership with OpenNotes Garners Attention from the White House

Key Takeaways: CHIME Announces Partnership with OpenNotes.

Why it Matters: On Thursday, February 25, CHIME President and CEO Russell Branzell, participated in The White House Precision Medicine Initiative Summit. During the event, several speakers highlighted progress that’s been made during the first year of the PMI. President Obama spoke about the power of information sharing.

For its part, CHIME unveiled a new partnership with OpenNotes, which part of a number of efforts announced at the event and detailed in a White House fact sheet.  Improving patient access to clinical notes will help spur patient engagement and can be a vital part of advancing more personalized care as envisioned by President Obama's Precision Medicine Initiative. Through the partnership, CHIME will work to raise awareness of OpenNotes and other patient-facing technologies. Currently, roughly 5 million patients have access to clinical notes thanks to OpenNotes. Through this collaboration, CHIME aims to help OpenNotes reach its goal of expanding to 50 million patients in 3 years.

Federal Affairs:

Meaningful Use Updates

Key Takeaways: CMS Pumps out more FAQs, hardship exemption guidance, and spec sheets you’ve been waiting for!  Go here for latest soup to nuts slide deck from CMS on all things Meaningful Use, including registry information.

Why it Matters: CMS continues to release additional guidance for both the 2015 and 2016 program years.


Reminder: The last day to attest for the 2015 Meaningful Use Program Year is Friday, March 11, 11:59 p.m., ET.  Having trouble?  Contact Mari Savickis, CHIME’s Vice President of Federal Affairs for assistance.


Wondering whether you can still apply for a hardship as late as July 1?  You can. While the law passed late in 2015 affords providers the ability to apply for a hardship in a more streamlined manner, CMS conceded you still have the option of filing as late as July 1.  The process, including the application for filing later remains the same. CHIME’s MU Hardship Fact Sheet has been updated to reflect this and the new FAQ that notes that applying for a hardship does not preclude you from being permitted to attest and receive incentives. 

Public Health FAQs

New FAQs:

Updated FAQs:

2016 Specifications Sheets

Nominations Sought for Health Care Industry Cybersecurity Task Force – March 9 Deadline

Key Takeaway: The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced the formation of a new Health Care Industry Cybersecurity Task Force as called for in the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act of 2015. Nominations must be submitted by March 9 at 5:00 p.m. ET.

Why It Matters:  the task force will build on our work to keep the nation’s healthcare systems secure and provide information to improve preparedness for cybersecurity threats affecting the healthcare industry.

HHS has invited healthcare partners to submit nominations for membership on the task force, suggesting the following qualifications: