HHS Publishes HIT Extension Program Plan | Healthcare Informatics Magazine | Health IT | Information Technology Skip to content Skip to navigation

HHS Publishes HIT Extension Program Plan

May 28, 2009
by root
| Reprints

In accordance with the HITECH Act, the Department of Health and Human Services today published in the Federal Register its proposal for a Health Information Technology Extension Program, consisting of a National Health Information Technology Research Center (HITRC) and Regional Extension Centers (RCs).

“The major focus of the Centers’ work with most of the providers that they serve will be to help to select and successfully implement certified electronic health records,” according to the document, signed by Charles Friedman, deputy national coordinator for health information technology, and dated May 22.

Regional centers, the document continues, will prioritize their assistance to the following groups:

  • Public or not-for-profit hospitals or critical-access hospitals.
  • Federally qualified health centers (as defined in section 1861(aa)(4) of the Social Security Act).
  • Entities that are located in rural and other areas that serve uninsured, underinsured, and medically underserved individuals (regardless of whether such area is urban or rural).
  • Individual or small group practices (or a consortium thereof) that are primarily focused on primary care.

Though the process was not clear, the proposal states that regional centers, “will be evaluated to ensure they are meeting the needs of the health providers in their geographic area … ”

The proposal goes on to describe the types of organizations, associations and consortia that might be well suited to apply for RC status, and recommends any group spend a minimum of two months on its proposal. HHS anticipates giving two-year contracts to the regional centers, with the average award of $1 to $2 million. It predicts maximum awards of $10 million. Initial awards could go out in the first quarter of FY2010, continuing through the fourth quarter of that fiscal year.

Comments on the proposal are due within two weeks of its publication, putting the deadline at 5 pm on June 11.


Get the latest information on Health IT and attend other valuable sessions at this two-day Summit providing healthcare leaders with educational content, insightful debate and dialogue on the future of healthcare and technology.

Learn More

Topics

News

ONC Roundup: Senior Leadership Changes Spark Questions

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) has continued to experience changes within its upper leadership, leading some folks to again ponder what the health IT agency’s role will be moving forward.

Media Report: Walmart Hires Former Humana Executive to Run Health Unit

Reigniting speculation that Walmart and insurer Humana are exploring ways to forge a closer partnership, Walmart Inc. has hired a Humana veteran to run its health care business, according to a report from Bloomberg.

Value-Based Care Shift Has Halted, Study Finds

A new study of 451 physicians and health plan executives suggests that progress toward value-based care has stalled. In fact, it may have even taken a step backward over the past year, the research revealed.

Study: EHRs Tied with Lower Hospital Mortality, But Only After Systems Have Matured

Over the past decade, there has been significant national investment in electronic health record (EHR) systems at U.S. hospitals, which was expected to result in improved quality and efficiency of care. However, evidence linking EHR adoption to better care is mixed, according to medical researchers.

Nursing Notes Can Help Predict ICU Survival, Study Finds

Researchers at the University of Waterloo in Ontario have found that sentiments in healthcare providers’ nursing notes can be good indicators of whether intensive care unit (ICU) patients will survive.

Health Catalyst Completes Acquisition of HIE Technology Company Medicity

Salt Lake City-based Health Catalyst, a data analytics company, has completed its acquisition of Medicity, a developer of health information exchange (HIE) technology, and the deal adds data exchange capabilities to Health Catalyst’s data, analytics and decision support solutions.