Friday, December 20, 2013

Dr Karen DeSalvo chosen as new Head of ONC

Let's congratulate Dr DeSalvo and lend our support in her new public service role!

She has been a strong advocate for the use of HIT to improve the quality of care.

Happy Holidays to all. SV


Advanced Health Information Resources

Friday, December 06, 2013


You have spoken and they have listened. 
Keep sharing your opinions so SV

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) today proposed a new timeline for the implementation of meaningful use for the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) proposed a more regular approach to update ONC’s certification regulations.
Under the revised timeline, Stage 2 will be extended through 2016 and Stage 3 will begin in 2017 for those providers that have completed at least two years in Stage 2. The goal of this change is two-fold: first, to allow CMS and ONC to focus efforts on the successful implementation of the enhanced patient engagement, interoperability and health information exchange requirements in Stage 2; and second, to utilize data from Stage 2 participation to inform policy decisions for Stage 3.

Monday, October 14, 2013

eClinicalworks National Users Conference 2013 updates

Visit and for updates on the event.


Wednesday, October 09, 2013

eClinicalWorks and EPIC collaborating with interoperability

This should help make coordination of care much more fluid and this is done using industry standards. SV

eClinicalWorks and Epic Work Collaboratively to Make EHRs Interoperable

Interoperability Between Systems Enables Real-time Communication Among Medical Providers in Different Care Settings

WESTBOROUGH, Mass.—September 24, 2013—eClinicalWorks® today announces bi-directional interoperability between the eClinicalWorks electronic health records (EHR) system and Epic’s EHR system. This integration allows for real-time data transfer between the systems, facilitating coordination of care between providers in various care settings and ensuring that providers have more complete and accurate patient information at the time of care. 


 eClinicalworks National Users Conference 


Friday, October 04, 2013

Dr Farzad Mostashari: next stop Brookings!

Good luck and thanks for continuing to support small practices. SV

The Brookings Institution

Government Health IT

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Healow App from eClinicalWorks: general information and video

I've been using HEALOW  on my cellphone for a while now and can say its rather impressive from the point of view of a physician as well as a patient. Runs on Apple and Android devices. SV

Here are some of utilities:

Simplify Your Life


Manage Your Medicine Cabinet

Being an Informed Patient is an Informed Consumer


Use Your Time Wisely

Stay Connected to Your Healthcare Providers

Here is a linik to a short video that helps patients understand the advantages of using the Patient Portal and the Healow app.



eClinicalWorks National Users Conference 2013 Details Available

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Free 2014 Physicians' Desk Reference eBook — Reserve Yours Today

Free 2014 Physicians' Desk Reference eBook — Reserve Yours Today
PDR eBook

The Physicians' Desk Reference® has stood as the authoritative source for FDA-approved full drug labeling information, trusted by healthcare professionals for nearly 70 years to support their prescribing decisions. Now, for the first time, this industry-leading resource is being made available in a convenient eBook format.

Reserve your FREE copy of the 2014 Physicians' Desk Reference eBook, register now at

For additional information, please contact PDR Network
at (866) 925-5155 or

Thank you,
PDR Network
Pass It On!
Would someone else in your office benefit from the Physicians' Desk Reference eBook? Encourage them to visit to reserve their own free eBook download.

Friday, August 30, 2013

CMS: How to Submit CQMs in 2013 ; PQRS Update; Electronic Reporting Pilots

Providers must report clinical quality measures (CQMs) to CMS to demonstrate meaningful use under the EHR Incentive Programs.
For the 2013 reporting year, there are two options for reporting CQMs for the Medicare EHR Incentive Program: through the CMS Attestation System OR through electronic reporting pilots.
When you are ready to submit CQM data through the Attestation System, you should:
  1. Log in to the CMS Registration and Attestation system
  2. Enter your data for the meaningful use core and menu objectives
  3. Report your CQM data directly from your certified EHR technology into the Attestation System:
    • Eligible professionals must report a total of six CQMs
      • Three core or alternate core measures (only report an alternate core measure if one of the core denominators is zero)
      • Three additional measures from a list of 38
    • Eligible hospitals must report a total of 15 CQMs
      • Two measures that target emergency department throughput processes
      • Seven measures that address the care of patients with stroke
      • Six measures that address the care of patients with venous thromboembolism
    • If you are attesting to CQM data for the EHR Incentive Programs you may submit a zero result for a CQM if the zero is the accurate calculation from your EHR
Electronic Reporting Pilots
Eligible professionals and eligible hospitals also have the option to submit CQMs through electronic reporting, or eReporting, pilots:
Providers participating in the Medicaid EHR Incentive Program will need to attest through their state’s internet-based portal.
Some CQMs cannot be met during the reporting period chosen by the provider and so exclusions are available for those CQMs. For example, many CQMs for EPs require a minimum of two visits for a patient to meet the denominator criteria. Exclusions do not count against a provider’s attestation requirements.
2014 CQM Reporting Changes
Beginning in 2014, all providers must report CQMs based on new requirements outlined in the Stage 2 final rule, regardless of what stage they are in.  For more information on these requirements, such as the number of CQMs and how to select which ones to report, visit the 2014 CQMs webpage.

Want more information about the EHR Incentive Programs?
Make sure to visit the CMS EHR Incentive Programs website for the latest news and updates on the EHR Incentive Programs.

CMS: New and Updated FAQs for the EHR Incentive Programs Now Available August 28 2013

To keep you updated with information on the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs, CMS has recently added four new and five updated FAQs to the CMS FAQ system. We encourage you to stay informed by taking a few minutes to review the new information below.
New FAQs:
  1. When meeting the meaningful use measure for computerized provider order entry (CPOE) in the EHR Incentive Programs, does an individual need to have the job title of medical assistant in order to use the CPOE function of certified EHR technology for the entry to count toward the measure, or can they have other titles as long as their job functions are those of medical assistants? Read the answer here.
  2. For the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs, how should an eligible professional (EP), eligible hospital, or critical access hospital attest if the certified EHR vendor uses 2011 edition certified EHR technology for the first part of 2013 and 2014 edition certified EHR technology for the remainder of 2013? Read the answer here.
  3. The specifications for Denominator 2 for measure CMS64v2 do not produce an accurate calculation according to the measure’s intent. When will a correction to this clinical quality measure (CQM) be published? Read the answer here.
  4. For the meaningful use Stage 2's transitions of care and referrals objective, in what ways can the second measure be met that requires more than 10% of the summary care records provided for transitions of care and referrals to be electronically transmitted in the EHR Incentive programs? Read the answer here.
Updated FAQs:
  1. How does a provider attest to a meaningful use objective (e.g., the “transitions of care,” “view/download patient data,” and public health objectives) where the provider electronically transmits data using technical capabilities provided by a health information exchange? Read the answer here.
  2. If an EP sees a patient in a setting that does not have certified EHR technology but enters all of the patient's information into certified EHR technology at another practice location, can the patient be counted in the numerators and denominators of meaningful use measures for the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs? Read the answer here.
  3. When new versions of CQM specifications are released by CMS, do developers of EHR technology need to seek retesting/recertification of their certified complete EHR or certified EHR module in order to keep its certification valid? Read the answer here.
  4. If EHR technology “Product A” is already certified to the December 2012 CQM specifications, can it be updated to include CMS updated June 2013 specifications without seeking retesting/recertification? Read the answer here.
  5. If EHR technology is not yet certified to CQM criteria (45 CFR 170.314(c)(1) through (3)), can the EHR technology be tested and certified to only the newest available version of the CQM specifications or must it be tested and certified to the December 2012 specifications (first or as well)? Read the answer here.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

MSSNY'S next Advocacy Matters program: NYS Health Information Network: SHIN-NY September 10, 2013

Register today for MSSNY'S next Advocacy Matters program: September 10, 2013

Program Title: The State Health Information Network- New York (SHIN-NY)- What is it and how is the New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeC) and the Department of Health’s Division of Health Information Transformation (OHITT) working to enhance information sharing and care coordination across the health care continuum  

Program Participants:
David Whitlinger, Executive Director, New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeC)
Steve Smith, Director of the Division of Health Information Technology Transformation
Educational Objectives:
  • Provide data concerning EHR adoption rates in New York State and how they compare with other states.

  • Describe the work of NYeC/DOH OHITT through the Statewide Collaborative process in establishing a roadmap for developing health information exchange in NYS.

  • Discuss the State Health Information Network (SHIN-NY), how it operates, its capabilities, how physicians can connect to it and the costs of participation.

  • Discuss additional statutory and regulatory recommendations under consideration by NYeC and the DOH OHITT.

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Dr. Farzad Mostashari, National Coordinator for Health Information Technology will step down this Fall.

Dr Mostashari will be adding his legacy at ONC to his contributions to the improvement of Healthcare in the US. He has the great ability to connect with practicing physicians, technology gurus and policy wonks.

Godspeed Dr Mostashari, thank you for bringing us to this far.

Sunday, August 04, 2013

CMS: EHR Incentive Programs: New FAQs on HIE and Public Health Measure Requirements for Meaningful Use

News Updates | August 2, 2013
To keep you updated with information on the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs, CMS has recently added five new FAQs and an updated FAQ to the CMS FAQ system. We encourage you to stay informed by taking a few minutes to review the new information below.
New FAQs:
  1. Can a state capture electronic Clinical Quality Measures, or eCQMs, for the Medicaid EHR Incentive Program through a Health Information Exchange (HIE)? Read the answer here.
  2. Can a public health agency use a HIE to interface with providers who are submitting public health data to meet the public health objectives of meaningful use (such as submitting information to an immunization registry, reporting lab results to a public health agency or reporting syndromic surveillance information)? Read the answer here.
  3. If a provider utilizes a health information organization that participates with the eHealth Exchange but is not connected to public health entities in the provider’s state, does the provider still need to connect to those entities for purposes of participating in the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Program? Read the answer here.
  4. How does a provider attest to a meaningful use objective (e.g., the “transitions of care,” “view/download patient data,” and public health objectives) where the provider electronically transmits data using technical capabilities provided by a HIE? Read the answer here.
  5. If an EP or hospital attesting to meaningful use in the EHR Incentive Program submits a successful test to the immunization registry in year 1 of Stage 1 and engages with the immunization registry in year 2, but does not achieve ongoing submission of data to the immunization registry during their reporting period in year 1 or year 2, should they attest to the measure or the exclusion? Read the answer here.
Updated FAQ:
If multiple eligible professionals or eligible hospitals contribute information to a shared portal or to a patient's online personal health record (PHR), how is it counted for meaningful use when the patient accesses the information on the portal or PHR? Read the answer here.
Want more information about the EHR Incentive Programs?
Make sure to visit the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs website for the latest news and updates on the EHR Incentive Programs.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Physician Office Usage of Electronic Health Records Software : January 2013

Thanks to Medical Economics for the link.
SK & A provides updates to the Federal Government. SV

Medical Economics

SK & A

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Medical Informatics Update Analytics and Tools for Care Coordination: IBM Research and the Columbia University Center for Advanced Information Management October 16, 2013


Medical Informatics Update
Analytics and Tools for Care Coordination
October 16, 2013

The 2013 edition of the Medical Informatics Update is a joint effort between IBM Research and the Columbia University Center for Advanced Information Management. The event will be held on October 16, 2013 in Yorktown, NY.

Care coordination is generally understood as the brokering of relevant services for patients to ensure that their needs are met such as that services are not duplicated by the providing organizations involved.

In contemporary usage, successful care coordination requires complex information systems able to manage and provide a wide range of patient related information such as medical status, medications, treatment plans, and alerts. This information needs to be efficiently conveyed to operational users of electronic medical records and other healthcare applications.

This Medical Informatics Update event on the 16th of October, 2013 will venture beyond the typical meaning of care coordination to include progress in analytic methods and other computational strategies that address broader problems in achieving care coordination in a 21st century  healthcare system.

Currently well informed speakers, from industry, academia, and government, have been invited and have agreed to share their achievements and the status of their fields to our interdisciplinary audience.

The event will feature invited talks, a poster and demonstration area, and a panel session on the topic of real-world care coordination efforts in New York State institutions.

Admission is free and lunch and refreshments will be provided by IBM, but pre-registration is required by September 15 2013. You may pre-register by sending email to Dr. Daby Sow at Feel free to contact Dr. Sow via email if you have any questions about this event. Alternatively, contact the Center for Advanced Information Management at 212.305.2944.

Monday, July 08, 2013

Attention Specialists:Everything You’ve Ever Wanted to Know about Meaningful Use and EHRs!

PCIP/NYC REACH are holding a FREE Meaningful Use Forum: Everything You’ve Ever Wanted to Know about Meaningful Use and EHRs!

Tuesday, July 16th, 7:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. Excelsior Grand Catering Hall 2380 Hylan Boulevard, Staten Island

I strongly encourage that you attend or send a representative. Please also pass along the invitation to your peers as prior registration is requested. SV

This breakfast meeting will cover a variety of topics, such as:
- Meaningful Use Overview (including Stage 2)
- Upcoming Deadlines and Penalties
- Vendor Selection Tips
- Our new Medicaid Specialist Program
- Other NYC REACH services, including the new PEEK (Patient Engagement and Education Kiosk) Project and billing optimization services. We have free assistance options for those that qualify and low-cost service options for all providers.

Attendees will have the opportunity to meet with EHR Vendors, Billing Clearinghouses, Provider Champions, and NYC REACH Staff Members. We will also honor those Staten Island providers who have already achieved Meaningful Use and Patient-Centered Medical Home Level 3.

Registration Link

Monday, July 01, 2013

eClinicalWorks Case Study Videos

eClinicalWorks has posted a series of case studies on Vimeo.

Here is the case study on our office. SV

eClinicalWorks Case Study: Salvatore Volpe MD PC from eClinicalWorks on Vimeo.


Sunday, June 16, 2013

CareFirst BCBS Patient-Centered Medical Home Program Trims Expected Health Care Costs by $98 million in Second Year

An excellent example of the results of savings derived by redirecting enhanced reimbursement to PCMH providers. SV

Baltimore, MD (June 6, 2013)  - In the second-year (2012) of one of the nation’s earliest, large-scale Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) programs, health care costs for 1 million CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield (CareFirst) members covered by the effort were $98 million less than the company projected. The results represent a savings of 2.7 percent on the total projected 2012 health care costs for PCMH-covered members and improve upon the 1.5 percent savings against projected costs registered by the program in 2011.
Approximately 66 percent of participating primary care panels – groups of physicians that join together to participate in the PCMH program – earned increased reimbursements for their 2012 performance in the program. Increased reimbursement levels – or Outcome Incentive Awards (OIAs) – are based on a combination of savings achieved by a particular panel against projected 2012 total care costs for CareFirst members and performance on quality measures related to the provision of care to the panel’s patients.
“These results are encouraging,” said CareFirst President and CEO Chet Burrell. “The PCMH program was designed with the goal of bending the health care cost trend, and our 2nd year results suggest that program is having just such an impact. In addition, more participating panels achieved savings and the vast majority of those who did so in 2011 were able to sustain those results in 2012. It is a measurable and meaningful step in the right direction of slowing the rise of health care costs.”
Currently, nearly 3,600 primary care providers (primary care physicians and nurse practitioners) participate in CareFirst’s PCMH program. One hundred-ninety six of the 297 eligible panels (66 percent) earned OIAs for the 2012 program year; 60 percent of panels earned OIAs in the program’s first year. The level of OIA for each Panel is based on both the level of quality and degree of savings achieved by the participants of the Panel.
2012 PCMH program highlights:
  • Primary care panels earning OIAs achieved an average 4.7 percent savings against expected 2012 care costs.
  • Panels that did not earn OIAs registered costs that averaged 3.6 percent higher than expected in 2012; an improvement over 2011 performance when panels that did not earn an OIA recorded costs 4 percent higher than expected.
  • 74 percent of panels that earned OIAs in 2011 earned them again in 2012, meaning their patients registered lower than expected total health care costs for two consecutive years.
  • On average, Panels earning OIAs will see an increase in their reimbursement level of 29 percentage points. This increase is in addition to a 12 percentage point increase paid to all participants that continue to remain in good standing in the PCMH program.
  • Quality scores for panels that earned OIAs were 3.7 percent higher than for panels that did not earn OIAs in 2012. Overall, quality scores for PCMH panels rose by 9.3 percent from 2011 to 2012 – a significant one year increase.
“While the numbers are important, they don’t tell the entire story,” said Burrell. “We are now well into the 3rd year of the PCMH program, and we have created an infrastructure of nursing support, easily-accessible online tools and data, and targeted health programs that make it possible for primary care providers to more effectively manage care for their sickest patients in a more coordinated fashion than ever before. Thousands of our members are benefitting directly from this care coordination and that impact will grow substantially as the program matures.”
CareFirst launched its PCMH program in January 2011. Today, more than 1 million CareFirst members are patients of physicians participating in the PCMH program. Nearly 80 percent of all eligible primary care physicians in CareFirst physician networks participate in the PCMH program.
“The early success and promise of the PCMH program encouraged us to seek and secure an Innovation Challenge Grant from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to expand the PCMH model to our area’s Medicare population,” said Burrell. “Medicare beneficiaries, who frequently have complex health needs and multiple chronic health conditions, could benefit greatly from the coordinated model of care offered through our PCMH. We expect to launch our CMS-funded Maryland Medicare PCMH pilot this summer and will continue to look for ways to expand the model.”

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

United Hospital Fund: Medicaid in New York: Strengthening Care Management and Coverage

Medicaid in New York: Strengthening Care Management and Coverage
Wednesday, July 10, 2013
8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
CUNY Graduate and University Center
365 5th Avenue (at 34thStreet), New York, NY

This United Hospital Fund conference will examine major strategic choices and operational challenges presented by recent and ongoing health care reforms, as well as how these choices and challenges are affected by resource constraints, tight deadlines, and federal oversight. 

In addition to the previously announced speakers—Jason Helgerson, Judith Arnold, and Jim Tallon—the panels “Improving Care Management through Medicaid Health Homes” and “Achieving Seamless Coverage: Work in Progress & Changes Ahead” have been formed.

Friday, May 24, 2013

HHS: Doctors and hospitals’ use of health IT more than doubles since 2012

It looks like the combination of financial incentives and support systems (RECs) has succeeded.
There is also a turnover in EHRs as practices become more savvy as to what is needed to run an efficient practice that can also improve the quality the care delivered.

MCOs are announcing more PCMH programs with enhanced reimbursement.
Will it be enough to sustain the system?

Let us know your opinion. SV

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today announced that more than half of all doctors and other eligible providers have received Medicare or Medicaid incentive payments for adopting or meaningfully using electronic health records (EHRs).

HHS has met and exceeded its goal for 50 percent of doctor offices and 80 percent of eligible hospitals to have EHRs by the end of 2013.

Since the Obama administration started encouraging providers to adopt EHRs, usage has increased dramatically. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention survey in 2012, the percent of physicians using an advanced EHR system was just 17 percent in 2008. Today, more than 50 percent of eligible professionals (mostly physicians) have demonstrated meaningful use and received an incentive payment. For hospitals, just nine percent had adopted EHRs in 2008, but today, more than 80 percent have demonstrated meaningful use of EHRs.

“We have reached a tipping point in adoption of electronic health records,” said Secretary Sebelius. “More than half of eligible professionals and 80 percent of eligible hospitals have adopted these systems, which are critical to modernizing our health care system. Health IT helps providers better coordinate care, which can improve patients’ health and save money at the same time.”

Adoption of Electronic Health Records by Physicians and Other Providers - Click for larger graph
  Adoption of Electronic Health Records by Eligible Hospitals - Click for larger graph       HHS   CMS HEALTHIT

Aetna Launches Patient-Centered Medical Home Program in New York!

Thanks Aetna!
Another great step towards encouraging and supporting PCMH in NY.
Looking forward to the details. SV

Aetna announced today the launch of its Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) program in New York. The program recognizes primary care physicians (PCPs) who more actively coordinate and manage their patients' care across the health care system. By strengthening the role of PCPs, the PCMH program aims to improve patient health outcomes.
"Patient-centered care is something Aetna has always advocated. Our PCMH program rewards PCPs who focus on the patient's entire health needs, not just a single condition," said Elizabeth Curran, head of National Network Strategy and Program Development for Aetna. "As a result, members may experience better health, fewer hospitalizations, improvements in transitions of care, and greater engagement. The PCMH program is one more way we are moving from a system that rewards the quantity of procedures to a system that rewards quality outcomes."
Primary care providers who participate in Aetna's networks, who have been recognized by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) as a PCMH, and who are not participating in other quality incentive programs with Aetna were considered for the PCMH program in New York. Recognized providers will receive a quarterly Coordination of Care payment for each commercial (non-Medicare) Aetna member in their care. The NCQA-recognized PCMH practices are recognized for providing a number of services, including:
  • Improved access to care, such as the ability to reach health professionals outside normal business hours;
  • Proactive and planned preventive care (screenings, physicals, labs);
  • Improved access through e-mail, web or telephone visits; and
  • Access to nurses and other health care professionals, allowing more focused physician visits.
Aetna serves 880,000 commercial members in New York. More than 200 physician practices are currently part of the growing program.



Thursday, May 23, 2013

Transforming Primary Care Practice. Annals of Family Medicine May/June 2013

Courtesy of the Patient Centered Primary Care Collaborative.
Recommended reading. SV

You will find that this month's Annals of Family Medicine is dedicated to "Transforming Primary Care Practice." The series of articles provides an in-depth analysis of'what it takes to fulfill the goals of the patient-centered medical home and primary care excellence, including a rare look at costs of transformation. They also serve as a reminder that as we continue on this road to health system transformation, the journey will incredibly challenging and resource intensive, but deeply rewarding when given the opportunity to look back and reflect on stories of success.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

NYeC Summit: Beyond EHRs: Information Exchange and Your Practice – New York City June 6th

This is one of series of Summits held throughout the state. 

See you there. SV

Thursday, June 6, 2013
New York Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge, Brooklyn, NY

Register Now!
The 2013 New York City Summit will bring together some of the best resources in the region to help answer questions about how EHRs and your Regional Health Information Exchange (the RHIO) can benefit your organization.

Learn About Health Information Exchange

Leadership and representatives from the RHIO, the New York State Department of Health, and current members will answer real questions about the capabilities of the health information exchange services offered by the RHIO. Topics will include the following:
  • Statewide patient record lookup
  • Direct communication between providers
  • Federal/local initiatives (such as Meaningful Use)
  • Health Homes

  • …and others, along with innovations taking place in your neck of the woods, and how you can tap into all of these to best care for your patients.
    Learn from those with first-hand experience about the Statewide Health Information Network of New York (SHIN-NY), and what resources are available locally to help you and your patients benefit from it.

    Who Should Attend

    Open to all those interested, including healthcare providers, hospital staff, payers, practice administration, and anyone else curious about health information exchange in New York. There is no fee to attend.
    Ask questions. Get answers. Get connected.

Venue Information

8:00 am – 1:00 pm
New York Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge
333 Adams Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Map of location

    Monday, May 20, 2013

    Internet Week New York 2013

    School winding down. Weather warming up. Check this week long festival. SV

    IWNY, taking place this year from May 20-27 2013, was launched in 2008 in cooperation with the New York City Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment. It is a week-long festival celebrating Internet business and culture and will attract more than 45,000 Internet professionals, working across all sectors, attending 250+ events produced by IWNY and 150+ citywide event partners. (This year citywide is extending a little further—out to the Hamptons for events there over Memorial Day weekend.) The central hub of the festival is the IWNY HQ at the Metropolitan Pavilion (125 W 18th Street - map). The HQ will bring together 10,000 attendees for four days of celebrity keynotes and lively panel discussions on two live-streamed stages, workshops and tutorials in the official IWNY classroom, dozens of interactive displays, a screening room (new for this year!), media center, a cafĂ© and a lounge.

    Internet Week

    Planned content tracks in the HQ will be dedicated to fashion & beauty in tech, music tech, sports & fitness in tech, food tech, and women in tech. We will also continue our mainstay focus on advertising, media, and marketing. There will be deeper dive, co-located conferences on areas such as healthcare & technology. We will also be incubating new topic areas such as how digital is impacting law, real estate, and finance. Beyond that, the overarching themes of IWNY 2013 will be digital education, bridging the digital divide, and empowering small businesses to get online.

    WellPoint's primary care program gets warm reception from docs

    As a member of the pilot project, I can say that Wellpoint is very interested in improving care through PCMH. SV

    Ever since WellPoint launched its unique and innovative patient-centered primary care program in January, the nation's second largest insurer says doctors already are providing positive feedback.
    WellPoint first announced the new reimbursement initiative last year, promising to pay more money to primary care doctors who meet certain quality goals when they keep patients healthier and lower costs. The program aims to increase doctors' revenue opportunities, enhance information sharing and provide care management support.

    Read more: WellPoint's primary care program gets warm reception from docs - FierceHealthPayer
    Subscribe at FierceHealthPayer

    Healthleaders Media

    Wellpoint PCMH

    Sunday, May 19, 2013

    HIMSSNYS Western New York Health IT Symposium on Wednesday June 26, 2013

    The New York Chapter of HIMSS (HIMSSNYS) is conducting our annual HIMSSNYS Western New York Health IT Symposium on Wednesday June 26, 2013 at Roberts Wesleyan College located at 2301 Westside Drive in Rochester.  Please hold the date!  I will be sending a complimentary registration link as soon as we announce our exciting list of speakers.

    The theme for this year’s event is “Patient Centered Care”.  Our members are interested in hearing more about the New York State Legislative perspective on the vision for healthcare including initiatives such as the Accountable Care Act, Meaningful Use and Accountable Care Organizations.  We are estimating 100 members from leading healthcare providers from the Buffalo, Rochester and Syracuse areas.

    We recently conducted our downstate annual conference “Health Information Technology (IT): When Disaster Strikes” on April 26 in NYC.  Our members are actively working to make Health IT more resilient for the next disaster given the recent natural disasters of Irene and Sandy.

    New York is one of leaders in the country with the use of Electronic Health Records.  Across the state, healthcare organizations representing the diversity of healthcare services delivered in a variety of healthcare settings have invested over $2 Billion to date.  In February 2009, the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record Incentive Program was established as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).  Title XIII of ARRA, called the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act allocated $19.2 Billion toward the development of healthcare IT.  To date, New York’s eligible hospitals, eligible professionals and Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs) have received more than $700 Million in incentive payments for implementation of Electronic Health Records.

    Buy tickets for New York State Chapter of HIMSS - Western NY HIT Symposium (Wed June 26th)  

    This year's Western NY symposium theme is Patient Centered Care (PCC). PCC is at the center of most of the initiatives being pushed forward, including HIE, ACO's, Meaningful Use, PCMH, and even payment reform.

    The event will be held on June 26th at Roberts Wesleyan College  Cultural Life Center's Hale Auditorium.


    8:00 am Registration Opens
    Continental Breakfast
    Vendor Area Open

    8:45 am Opening Session
    Welcome by RWC President or designee
    Welcome by NYS HIMSS
    General Announcements

    9:00 am Morning Keynote Speaker:  Paul Wilder, VP of Product Management, NYS eHealth Collaborative

    9:45 am Session 1:  Fran Weisberg, Executive Director, FLHSA on Changes in HC Landscape and Patient Centered Care

    10:45 am Morning Break  Vendor Area Open

    11:15 am Session 2:  RGH/Unity Speaker on Future of Care Delivery & Patient Centered Care

    12:15 pm Lunch

    1:30 pm Afternoon Keynote:  Ted Kremer, Executive Director, Rochester RHIO

    2:30 pm Session 3:  Well Performing PCMH & ACO - Alan Gilbert, Team of Care

    3:15 pm Panel Discussion

    4:00 pm Closing Reception (vendor area open, and prize drawing - must be present to win) 

    Tuesday, May 14, 2013

    NYeC and NYCREACH RECs Offers New Medicaid Specialists Program to Support EHR Adoption

    A new program to service and support Medicaid specialists in the adoption, implementation, and use of EHRs across New York State is being launched by the New York eHealth Collaborative Regional Extension Center (NYeC REC). The Medicaid Specialists Program will assist providers in qualifying for up to $63,000 of incentive payments from CMS, upon demonstrating their commitment to improving patient care.

    Providers previously ineligible to receive support from the REC for earlier Meaningful Use initiatives are encouraged to enroll. Specialists and some primary care providers who may have previously been referred to as being ‘out-of-scope’ in the original ONC Meaningful Use Incentive Programs will be supported by this program.

    Find out more about eligibility and conditions of participation at
    To learn if you qualify for the Medicaid Specialists Program and to sign up, please contact: Peggy Frizzell, HIT Implementation Project Manager for NYeC at, or by phone at (646) 619-6562.

    If you practice in NYC go to to find out if you or a specialist at your practice is eligible.
    Join NYC REACH now at no cost to start taking advantage of these valuable, free trainings.  

    Monday, May 13, 2013

    CDPHP Physicians’ Academy™ Inducts Class Of 2013

    Kudos to the three physician awardees. SV

    This year’s honorees are being recognized for their commitment to improving the quality of health care in our community,” said John D. Bennett, MD, president and CEO, CDPHP. “As a physician-founded and guided health plan, the connection we share with our network physicians is what sets us apart. The CDPHP Physicians’ Academy is just one way that we celebrate the work being done by local physicians to achieve better health, better care, and lower costs,” added Bennett.


    Monday, May 06, 2013

    NYS Medicaid Primary Care Increased Reimbursement Attestation

    Primary Care Rate Increase Attestation Now Available
    Under the Affordable Care Act, Medicaid primary care practitioners may qualify for increased reimbursement at the rate that would be paid for primary care services under Medicare. The New York State Medicaid Fee For Service and Managed Care Primary Care Rate Increase attestation form and FAQ document are now available on the eMedNY website at the following links:


    Nurse Practitioners:

    Nurse Midwives:

    For specific questions, please review the FAQ document. Additional questions can be forwarded to:

    Providers can sign up to receive ongoing updates on the PCRI program at: and through the eMedNY listerv at


    Happy Nurses Week!

    National Nurses Week 2013
    Delivering Quality and Innovation in Patient Care

    Often described as an art and a science, nursing is a profession that embraces dedicated people with varied interests, strengths and passions because of the many opportunities the profession offers. As nurses, we work in emergency rooms, school based clinics, and homeless shelters, to name a few. We have many roles – from staff nurse to educator to nurse practitioner and nurse researcher – and serve all of them with passion for the profession and with a strong commitment to patient safety.
    National Nurses Week is celebrated annually from May 6, also known as National Nurses Day, through May 12, the birthday of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing.

    American Nurses Association

    Friday, April 26, 2013

    HIMSSNYS MINI-HIMSS 2013 has begun

    Looking forward to learn and network

    Thursday, April 25, 2013

    NYS Patient Portal Challenge NYC Demo Day

    Looking forward to seeing you there! SV

    The New York eHealth Collaborative is looking to provide 19.5 million New Yorkers with safe and secure access to their records through the statewide health information exchange via an online portal, essentially a website where New Yorkers will be able to log in and access their health data. In order to design the best possible and most user-friendly portal interface, the New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeC) launched the Patient Portal for New Yorkers Design Challenge, asking the country’s talented developers and designers to create innovative prototypes that showcase the information that can be made available to patients accessing the statewide health information exchange. The public will have a say in selecting top finalists during a public voting phase that will take place from April 13 – 23, 2013.
    The Patient Portal for New Yorkers Design Challenge will culminate in two ‘Demo Days’ taking place in NYC (April 30th) and Buffalo (May 2nd) that will include live presentations by the 10 finalists chosen during the public voting phase. We invite you to join us for these demo days to support these incredible innovators! Register for the NYC demo day using the link below.

    Register for April 30!


    Arena NYC

    135 West 41st Street
    (6th Ave. & Bway)
    New York NY 10036
    Map and Directions


    Doors Open

    Doors will open at 3pm. Make sure to arrive early so you can get a good seat!

    Welcome Remarks

    Welcome remarks from New York eHealth Collaborative and partners.

    Presentations From Top Finalists

    From 3:30 - 6pm, check out what the top finalists have to offer for New York's patient portal! Each presenter will have 5 - 7 minutes followed by Q&A from the judges.

    Networking Session

    Celebrate the evening with a networking session from 6 - 7pm, complete with an open bar and Hors d'oeuvres!

    Wednesday, April 24, 2013


    Here is the CMS retrospective of the progress made to date in the US.

    We all need to to stay involved and participate in the many forums to help shape the future of HIT. SV



    In 2009, the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, a part of the Recovery Act, created the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Records (EHR) Incentive Programs to promote the adoption of EHRs in support of the ultimate goals of improving the quality of patient care and reducing health costs. Through this program, eligible hospitals and doctors earn incentives by demonstrating “meaningful use” of certified technology, which means that health care providers use EHRs in ways that improve care and lower costs. Examples of “meaningful use” include electronic prescribing of medications and ensuring patients have access to their digital records. 

    In addition to providing incentive payments, the HITECH Act calls for assistance and technical support to help providers implement EHRs, enables coordination within and among states to support the implementation of EHRs, and develops a properly trained health IT workforce to support providers in becoming meaningful users of certified EHRs.

    These programs, administered by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology (ONC), are building the foundation for every American to benefit from an EHR as part of a modernized, interconnected, and improved system of care delivery. By putting in place EHR systems that meet rigorous functionality and ease-of-use standards, providers and patients will reap tangible benefits in quality and affordability. These include easy access to health records and data, reminders and alerts for providers and patients, and reductions in medical errors.

    The Affordable Care Act includes numerous reforms to improve the quality of health care and lowers costs for taxpayers and patients. Health IT is critical to implementing and making these new payment and delivery models work. Health IT provides the kind of smart data and analytics that is already helping programs such as Accountable Care Organizations, bundled payments, patient-centered medical homes, and value-based purchasing. For example, CMS has reported a significant decrease in the hospital readmission rate of Medicare patients returning to the hospital after being discharged. After fluctuating between 18.5 percent and 19.5 percent for the past five years, the 30-day all-cause readmission rate dropped to 17.8 percent in the final quarter of 2012, preventing 70,000 readmissions last year. Health IT enabled hospitals to measure and achieve these results.


    1. Robust Participation in the EHR Incentive Programs:
      • Hospital Participation: More than 85 percent of eligible hospitals are participating in the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs, and more than 75 percent have received incentive payments for meaningfully using EHR technology as of March 2013.
      • Physicians and other Health Care Provider Participation: More than 388,000 of the nation’s eligible professionals have registered to participate in the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs, representing 73 percent of all providers eligible to participate. More than 230,000, or 44 percent of all eligible professionals, have received an EHR incentive payment for meaningfully using EHR technology as of March 2013.
      • Assistance from Regional Extension Centers: HITECH funds established 62 Health Information Technology Regional Extension Centers (RECs) to offer technical assistance and guidance that is critical to accelerating the provider adoption and meaningful use of EHRs, particularly in rural areas and other underserved settings.
        • RECs are providing assistance and support to more than 44 percent (130,000) of primary care providers and 48 percent (20,000) of Nurse Practitioners nationwide.
        • More than 80 percent of all Federally Qualified Health Centers are enrolled with a REC.
      • Effect on the Health IT Marketplace: Federal investment and standard setting have helped to create a robust market for eHealth IT products. As of March 2013, there are 941 vendors providing more than 1,700 unique certified EHR products.
    2. Rapid Adoption of Advanced Technology: Survey data shows that the HITECH Act has dramatically accelerated providers’ use of key health IT capabilities nationwide:
      • E-Prescribing: Office-based physicians’ use of e-prescribing has increased from 0.8 percent in December 2006 to 53 percent through January 2013, and more than 94 percent of all pharmacies are now actively e-prescribing.
      • Hospitals:  between 2008 and 2012, the number of hospitals using EHR systems with certain advanced functionalities that go even beyond the requirements of Meaningful Use Stage 1 (including physician clinical notes and electronic imaging results) more than quadrupled from 9.4 percent to 44 percent.  
      • Doctors: Physician adoption of EHR systems with the same advanced functionalities more than doubled between 2008 and 2012, from 17 percent to 40 percent.

    • Economic Impact:
      • According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 50,000 health IT-related jobs have been created since HITECH was enacted.
      • As of January 2013, community colleges have trained 17,049 professionals in health IT, and as of September 2012, universities had graduated over 820 post-graduate and masters-level health IT professionals. This is the result of four ONC-supported workforce development programs that are helping to train the new health IT workforce to meet the increased demand for these workers.
      • As of February 2013, the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs have paid $12.6 billion in incentives to hospitals, doctors, and other health care professionals.


    • Beacon Community Program: This grant program funds 17 pioneering communities across the country that are using health IT as a foundation for bringing together doctors, hospitals, local health program administrators, and patients to achieve measurable improvements in health care quality, safety, efficiency, and population health. For example, the Beacon Communities in the Mississippi Delta and Southeast Michigan are working to improve diabetes care through the use of IT-enabled care management and coordination strategies. The Keystone Beacon in Pennsylvania and the San Diego and Maine Beacon Communities are using health IT to reduce emergency department visits and hospital admissions and readmissions.
    • State Health Information Exchange Program: This grant program supports efforts in 56 states and territories to set up health information exchange (HIE) capability among clinicians and hospitals within and across state lines.  The 56 HIE entities are increasing the connectivity of health information between providers to help improve the quality and efficiency of care.
    • Medicaid funding for Health Information Exchanges: This program provides administrative funding to help states build HIT infrastructure and support enrollment of providers in the Medicaid program. States must demonstrate a sustainable HIE business model to qualify for funding.  This program facilitates the adoption and use of HIE and helps Medicaid providers meet meaningful use criteria.
    • Strategic Health IT Advanced Research Projects (SHARP) Program: This grant program funds innovations in health IT to address well-documented problems that have impeded HIT adoption in areas such as health IT security and the secondary use of EHR data.


    HHS recently announced a plan to accelerate health information exchange (HIE) development and build a seamless and secure flow of information essential to transforming the health care system in 2013.  Steps include:

    • Setting Aggressive Goals for 2013: HHS is setting the goal of 50 percent of physician offices using EHRs and 80 percent of eligible hospitals receiving meaningful use incentive payments for using EHR technology by the end of 2013. 

    • Increasing the Emphasis on Interoperability: HHS will increase its emphasis on ensuring electronic exchange between providers and across settings of care. We will leverage HHS programs and resources to promote interoperability through multiple channels.   Recently, we issued a request for information (RFI) seeking public input on policies that will strengthen the business case for electronic exchange between providers to ensure that patients’ health information will follow them seamlessly and securely wherever they access care.

    • Enhancing the Effective Use of EHRs through Initiatives similar to the Blue Button Initiative:  Today, Medicare beneficiaries can access their full Medicare records online.  HHS is also encouraging Medicare Advantage plans to expand the use of Blue Button to provide beneficiaries with one-click secure access to their health information. An HHS challenge facilitated the creation of an app that makes information downloaded from Blue Button easy for a patient to understand and use. HHS is also working with the Veterans Administration and more than 450 different organizations to adopt initiatives similar to Blue Button to make health information available to patients and health plan members. 

    • Implementing Stage 2 of Meaningful Use:  HHS is implementing the next stage of the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs, which focuses on increasing health information exchange between providers and promoting patient engagement by giving patients secure online access to their health information.

    • Highlighting Program Integrity: HHS is taking new steps to ensure the integrity of EHR Incentive Programs and that technology is not being used to promote fraudulent activity. For example, CMS has implemented audits of providers and hospitals who have adopted health IT.  CMS is also working with state program integrity directors to establish new strategies focused on claims and clinical data from these providers. In addition, EHR technology is creating spillover benefits for program integrity in other federal programs: the Social Security Administration reports that Disability Insurance initial decisions are 21 percent faster for cases based on electronic medical evidence, with greater accuracy than paper records.

    CMS has also launched its eHealth initiative  to align existing Medicare and Medicaid quality measurement programs (e.g., Physician Quality Reporting System, Hospital Inpatient Quality Reporting), EHR standards and usage requirements through the EHR Incentive Programs, ICD-10 implementation, and other health IT-focused efforts to better support the ultimate goals of improving the quality of patient care and reducing health costs. With the increased use of EHRs, providers now have the ability to use standardized processes to send quality clinical data to Health Information Exchanges, state Medicaid agencies, and CMS.

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