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Health Management Technology News
  March 31, 2014
In this issue:
 

► AHIMA calls on members, stakeholders to continue advocacy to prevent ICD-10 delay

► Sound off on today's healthcare companies and trends!

► Becoming cyborgs: ear-based wearable tech disrupts healthcare

► HHS releases security risk assessment tool to help providers with HIPAA compliance

► Healthcare messaging service now fully implemented


AHIMA calls on members, stakeholders to continue advocacy to prevent ICD-10 delay

The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) expressed extreme disappointment at the vote passed by the U.S. House of Representatives on a bill that included a seven-line section preventing implementation of the ICD-10 code set until at least October 1, 2015, and is encouraging the healthcare industry to take action to stop the potential ICD-10 delay.

“AHIMA is calling on its more than 72,000 members and other stakeholders to contact their Senators to urge them to remove the ICD-10 language that was quietly inserted into a bill focused on the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) for physicians,” said AHIMA CEO Lynne Thomas Gordon, MBA, RHIA, CAE, FACHE, FAHIMA. “It is unfortunate that the House of Representatives chose to embed language about ICD-10 into the proposed SGR fix in their effort to temporarily address the long outstanding and critically important physician payment issues.”

The Senate has scheduled the vote for Monday, March 31, 2014.

AHIMA has steadfastly championed the benefits of the transition to ICD-10. The transition is particularly time-sensitive because of the urgent need to track, identify and analyze the new clinical services and treatments available to patients. ICD-9-CM, which is outdated and imprecise, adversely affects the value of healthcare data and ultimately adversely compromises the quality of patient care.

World Health Organization (WHO) member states have been using ICD-10 since 1994. The United States remains one of the few developed countries that has not made the transition to ICD-10 or a clinical modification.

“The healthcare industry has had an abundance of time to prepare for the ICD-10 transition,” Thomas Gordon said. “Many hospitals, healthcare systems, third-party payers and physicians’ offices have prepared – in good faith – and made critical investments to be ready by the implementation deadline.”

It has been estimated that a one-year delay of ICD-10 could cost between $1 billion to $6.6 billion.

In addition to the resources and time that healthcare professionals have put in to prepare, more than 25,000 students in Health Information Management (HIM) associate and baccalaureate educational programs will be affected by the delay. Many of these students have been trained exclusively in ICD-10.

“As the demand for quality healthcare data increases, a delay in ICD-10 implementation will cause the healthcare system to face additional struggles to fill these important HIM positions,” Thomas Gordon said.

Learn more about the AHIMA virtual rally here ► 

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Sound off on today's healthcare companies and trends!

Help us rank the healthcare industry’s “best” suppliers in key product, service and technology areas. We will report your shared opinions in an upcoming issue of Health Management Technology.

Begin by clicking the link here ► 

Return to the table of contents ► 


Becoming cyborgs: ear-based wearable tech disrupts healthcare

Health and healthcare have typically been a personal relationship between doctors and patients – kept private and behind closed doors. More recently, however, healthcare is being opened up by technology.  Medical questions are crowdsourced, records are electronic and doctors are connected directly with their patients – before, during, after, and sometimes instead of a visit to the office. Besides making the relationship between doctors and patients more connected and open than ever, technology is also changing the way an individual monitors his or her own health.

Today, it’s common to see people wearing a Nike FuelBand or FitBiton their wrists, indicating that they’re tracking steps taken, calories burned and personal bests throughout the day. Considered by some to be the first step towards a true cyborg existence, where man and machine will be one, fitness trackers have truly become a staple for many.

Read the full Forbes article here ► 

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HHS releases security risk assessment tool to help providers with HIPAA compliance

A new security risk assessment (SRA) tool to help guide health care providers in small to medium sized offices conduct risk assessments of their organizations is now available from HHS.

The SRA tool is the result of a collaborative effort by the HHS Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and Office for Civil Rights (OCR). The tool is designed to help practices conduct and document a risk assessment in a thorough, organized fashion at their own pace by allowing them to assess the information security risks in their organizations under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Security Rule. The application, available for downloading at 
www.HealthIT.gov/security-risk-assessment
also produces a report that can be provided to auditors.

HIPAA requires organizations that handle protected health information to regularly review the administrative, physical and technical safeguards they have in place to protect the security of the information. By conducting these risk assessments, health care providers can uncover potential weaknesses in their security policies, processes and systems.  Risk assessments also help providers address vulnerabilities, potentially preventing health data breaches or other adverse security events. A vigorous risk assessment process supports improved security of patient health data.

Conducting a security risk assessment is a key requirement of the HIPAA Security Rule and a core requirement for providers seeking payment through the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Program, commonly known as the Meaningful Use Program.

“Protecting patients’ protected health information is important to all health care providers and the new tool we are releasing will help them assess the security of their organizations,” said Karen DeSalvo, M.D., national coordinator for health information technology. “The SRA tool and its additional resources have been designed to help health care providers conduct a risk assessment to support better security for patient health data.”

“We are pleased to have collaborated with the ONC on this project,” said Susan McAndrew, deputy director of OCR’s Division of Health Information Privacy. “We believe this tool will greatly assist providers in performing a risk assessment to meet their obligations under the HIPAA Security Rule.”

Read the full HHS press release here ► 

Return to the table of contents ► 


Healthcare messaging service now fully implemented

The Air Force has recently completed implementation of its secure healthcare-messaging system, MiCare, to all 76 of its medical treatment facilities worldwide.

As of March 1, more than 360,000 Air Force healthcare beneficiaries and 2,300 providers have signed up for this service, which allows the patient and provider to communicate on a secure network regarding non-urgent healthcare concerns.

The MiCare network also allows beneficiaries to view their healthcare record, make appointments, fill prescriptions and allows providers to push important preventative care updates to the members.

Overall, Airmen, their families and beneficiaries using MiCare can expect a decrease in trips to the MTF and more personal communication with their healthcare team.

Read the full Northwest Florida Daily News article here ► 

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►  READ ALL NEWS AT HEALTHMGTTECH.COM


 
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Industry News
3.31.14
AHIMA calls for continued advocacy to prevent ICD-10 delay
The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) expressed extreme disappointment at the vote passed by the U.S....
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3.31.14
House passes SGR "doc fix" & ICD-10 delay; Senate to vote Monday
On Thursday, March 27th, the U.S. House of Representatives approved by voice vote HR 4302, a new bill that would create a...
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3.28.14
HHS releases security risk assessment tool to help providers with HIPAA compliance
A new security risk assessment (SRA) tool to help guide health care providers in small to medium sized offices conduct risk...
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3.28.14
House to vote on ICD-10 delay
The House Rules Committee approved for a vote a new bill that would delay the conversion to ICD-10 by one year to...
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3.27.14
AMA statement on pending vote for temporary SGR patch
"Facing another self-imposed deadline, the House of Representatives is scheduled to vote Thursday on the "Protecting Access to...
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