HIMSS EHR Association

The HIMSS Electronic Health Record (EHR) Association is a trade association of Electronic Health Record (EHR) companies, addressing national efforts to create interoperable EHRs in hospital and ambulatory care settings. The EHR Association operates on the premise that the rapid, widespread adoption of EHRs will help improve the quality of patient care as well as the productivity and sustainability of the healthcare system.

News and Resources

EHR Association Responds to ONC’s Report on Information Blocking (October 2015)
In April, 2015, ONC issued the “Report on Health Information Blocking” in response to a request from Congress to report on the extent of health information blocking and propose a comprehensive strategy to address it. In its response, the EHRA notes the consideration with which ONC identified the potential and real challenges, as well as ideas to minimize information blocking, and looks forward to working with ONC and other stakeholders to establish an environment where the right data can flow to the right party at the right time, using a minimum set of agreed upon standards that are always available, while allowing space for innovation to further improve on how data best can be shared across all stakeholders.

EHR Association Comments on the PFS NPRM (Chicago, September 2015)
EHRA has responded to the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (PFS), CY 2016 Revisions to Payment Policies under the Physician Fee Schedule and Other Revisions to Medicare Part B, reiterating their position that EHRs and other health information technologies are foundational to healthcare payment reform, including new payment models based on outcomes and quality. Details of those comments are available here.

EHR Association Publishes Interoperability FAQs (Chicago, August 2015)
EHRA is making their Interoperability Frequently Asked Questions available to help all stakeholders understand the basic tenets of this complex topic. The Association is encouraging its members and others to use it as an educational tool to move this important work forward. 

EHRA Sponsors Provider Exec Panel on Interoperability (Washington DC, July 2015)
Congressional staff meeting packet here.

EHRA Sponsors Provider Exec Panel on Interoperability (Washington DC, July 2015)
More than 100 Congressional staffers, media representatives, and others attended today’s interoperability panel on Capitol Hill. The panel discussed their experiences in a variety of healthcare settings in meeting the challenges of health IT interoperability and the benefits to both their organizations and their patients. Common themes heard from the panelists included the need to move away from a prescriptive approach by the government so "innovative approaches have room to breathe", EHRs and health IT have delivered tremendous benefit to patients, and clinical systems are fundamental to success in delivery system reform efforts.

EHR Association Offers Comments on Certification Draft Test Procedures (Chicago, July 2015)
EHRA expressed appreciation for the efforts of the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) to develop simpler, less prescriptive certification test procedures, and proposed a new format for the test procedures that would make all the required information available to EHR developers in one place. The full response is available here and the cover letter is available here.

EHRA Elects New Leadership (Chicago, June 2015)
The Electronic Health Record Association (EHRA) announced new leadership for the coming year after their annual elections earlier this month. Three Executive Committee members were re-elected to two-year terms, one new member was added, and a new chair and vice chair were elected. These individuals fulfill the Association's objective to maintain balanced representation from companies that serve healthcare enterprises, as well as those serving the ambulatory EHR market.

EHR Association Responds to Proposed Modifications to the Meaningful Use Program (June 2015)
In its comments to the proposed "Modifications to Meaningful Use in 2015 through 2017", EHRA emphasizes that efforts to simplify and focus meaningful use as reflected in the CMS modification proposal will be key to the ongoing success of the EHR Incentive program. They urge that, given the limited time available left in 2015, a final rule is issued as quickly as possible in order to maximize its positive impacts on the program for 2015 and 2016.

Washington DC (May 22)
EHRA Chair Presents to Institute for eHealth Policy on Interoperability.

EHRA Comments on ONC and CMS NPRMs for MU Stage 3 (May 2015)
The EHR Association (EHRA) submitted its comments, developed through a collaborative effort of representatives from its nearly 40 member companies, on the proposed rules for Stage 3 meaningful use (MU) criteria for providers and 2015 Edition certification requirements for health IT developers. Suggesting that some of the Stage 3 requirements can be met by existing 2014 Edition capabilities, and encouraging ONC and CMS to build on lessons learned in MU Stage 2, with a much more focused and simplified approach emphasizing interoperability, EHRA expresses continued support for the HIT incentive program.

EHRA Responds to ONC's Standards Advisory Proposal (May 2015)
The EHR Association submitted its comments to ONC's Standards Advisory Proposals, noting that while they generally agree with most of ONC's choices in evaluating the "best available" standards, the intended use of the Interoperability Standard Advisory needs to be further refined to avoid misinterpretations, especially in relation to regulation and the Interoperability Roadmap.

EHRA Responds to ONC's 10 Year Interoperability Roadmap (April 2015)
Representing nearly 40 member companies which serve the majority of hospitals and ambulatory care settings using electronic health records (EHRs) to provide safer, more effective care to their patients, EHRA has submitted its comments on the ONC Interoperability Roadmap. While applauding the general collaborative approach that ONC has taken, EHRA also emphasizes that development and execution of such a roadmap requires trust among stakeholder groups, and a collaborative spirit between the stakeholders and the federal government, without a federally-dominated process and also without prescriptive requirements. To this end, the Association recommends that ONC and other federal agencies should be active partners with the private sector in governance across the various domains, such as standards development, testing, and other areas.

EHRA Creates New Workgroup to Focus on Healthcare Delivery System Reform (February 2015)
The Electronic Health Record Association (EHRA) announced today that it has established a new Healthcare Delivery System Reform Workgroup to accelerate the ability of companies that develop EHRs to contribute to the effort to transform the US healthcare system. The Workgroup will be a source of information and education for EHRA members, providing a forum for discussion, as well as a vehicle for monitoring and providing input to congressional and regulatory initiatives.

EHRA Responds to the Federal Health IT Strategic Plan (February 2015)
In its response to the Federal Health IT Strategic Plan, the EHR Association emphasizes that a critical role for ONC is to ensure that the Strategic Plan is synchronized with the recently released Interoperability Roadmap, and encourages ONC and the other government agencies involved in health IT to identify existing metrics that can measure the progress of the Plan.