Mostashari Describes ONC Budget Request, Certification Fee Proposal | Healthcare Informatics Magazine | Health IT | Information Technology Skip to content Skip to navigation

Mostashari Describes ONC Budget Request, Certification Fee Proposal

April 17, 2013
by David Raths
| Reprints

Speaking at the April 17 Health IT Standards Committee meeting, National Coordinator for Health IT Farzad Mostashari briefed committee members about the Obama Administration’s 2014 budget request, which calls for an increase in ONC funding. He noted that since the office was founded in 2006, the annual appropriation for it has remained at $61 million per year.

Of course, ONC has also had $2 billion in one-time funds to oversee contracts to get specific work done, such as development of a standards and interoperability framework. That has led to many advances, he said, including the harmonization on one patient summary of care record. “We have made great progress over the past few years and made very good use of one-time funds, but they expire in September 2013,” he said.

The budget document acts as a statement of priorities for the administration, he explained. And it calls for an increase in ONC’s budget to $78 million. Mostashari said ONC uses its funding well to leverage community participation in ongoing policy and standards development activities. “We are hopeful Congress will understand this and will act on it,” he said.

The second element of the budget related to ONC is the proposal of a fee on EHR vendors that would raise $1 million total to help cover costs associated with the certification process.

“Having an assured funding base for certification would reduce uncertainty for the industry,” he noted. “If we get certification wrong and don’t have enough resources, that translates into extra time, money and developer resources the vendors can’t afford,” he said. “But the only way this is going to work is if vendors perceive they are getting more in benefits than whatever it would cost them in certification fees.”

HIT Standards Committee Chair John Halamka, M.D., asked Mostashari whether institutions with self-developed EHRs would be subject to such a fee. Mostashari responded that issues such as that would have to be worked out in the regulatory process.

Topics

News

NewYork-Presbyterian, Walgreens Partner on Telemedicine Initiative

NewYork-Presbyterian and Walgreens are collaborating to bring expanded access to NewYork-Presbyterian’s healthcare through new telemedicine services, the two organizations announced this week.

ONC Releases Patient Demographic Data Quality Framework

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) developed a framework to help health systems, large practices, health information exchanges and payers to improve their patient demographic data quality.

AMIA, Pew Urge Congress to Ensure ONC has Funding to Implement Cures Provisions

The Pew Charitable Trusts and the American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA) have sent a letter to congressional appropriators urging them to ensure that ONC has adequate funding to implement certain 21st Century Cures Act provisions.

Former Michigan Governor to Serve as Chair of DRIVE Health

Former Michigan Governor John Engler will serve as chair of the DRIVE Health Initiative, a campaign aimed at accelerating the U.S. health system's transition to value-based care.

NJ Medical Group Launches Statewide HIE, OneHealth New Jersey

The Medical Society of New Jersey (MSNJ) recently launched OneHealth New Jersey, a statewide health information exchange (HIE) that is now live.

Survey: 70% of Providers Using Off-Premises Computing for Some Applications

A survey conducted by KLAS Research found that 70 percent of healthcare organizations have moved at least some applications or IT infrastructure off-premises.