HIMSS US Supports Provider Disincentives For Info Blocking

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Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society- HIMSS US has gone on to support the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services- CMS as well as the Office of the National Coordinator- ONC proposals when it comes to provider disincentives for information blocking and has also recommended offering resources and education for providers in order to facilitate apt access to electronic health information. These public comments happened to be submitted by HIMSS in response to the 21st Century Cures Act: Establishment of Disincentives for Health Care Providers, which happens to have an information-blocking proposed rule.

It is well to be noted that the proposed rule details financial disincentives, which go on to range from $600 for an individual provider to up to $165,000 in the case of large provider groups, whereas Accountable Care Organizations- ACO, found to be information blocking, will be removed from the Medicare Shared Savings Program for one year. The rulemaking also goes on to propose the creation of a website that will look into organizations and the nature of the information blocking offense in the case of providers being found guilty pertaining to information blocking by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services- HHS Office of the Inspector General.

HIMSS has apparently supported the execution of disincentives for providers participating in information blocking and, at the same time, suggested CMS raise the financial incentives for compliance, develop tiers for financial disincentives; and also provide additional education as well as resources for first-time information blockers that are found to be acting in good faith in order to encourage participation when it comes to information exchange. HIMSS also went on to recommend a robust marketing campaign in order to raise awareness of the proposed information-blocking webpage resource.

According to senior vice president and head of government relations at HIMSS, Tom Leary, they acknowledge the delicate balance the government is trying to have, and generating disincentives will even encourage participation within the interoperable ecosystem, but without any reason, the burden will discourage provider participation when it comes to Medicare.

He added that great information exchange goes on to support rising access in terms of care and ultimately enhances patient safety as well as care outcomes. It is well to be noted that HIMSS goes on to encourage both ONC and CMS to provide additional education as well as resources so as to mitigate potential hardships as providers go on to abandon the information blocking practices.