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Health Information Technology Standards

Adoption of Standards-Based Health IT Products

Adoption of Standards-Based Health IT is the process of implementing, deploying, and utilizing standards-based information technology in real world applications. The Health IT Adoption Stories module is a resource that provides examples of how standards-based HIT products have been adopted in public health.

It is also a resource for tools and other materials that assist public health entities to understand and navigate the complexities of health IT standards, facilitate public health adoption of national standards in current and future HIT projects, and align public health applications with those of the broader health care industry.

The table below lists initiatives that enable adoption of standards-based HIT products through funding and grants to states and other entities.

Standards Adoption
Standards Adoption Initiatives Domains
Beacon Community Program Electronic health records, health information exchange
CMS EHR Incentive Program Electronic health records
ONC State Health Information Exchange Cooperative Agreement Program Health Information Exchange

Beacon Community Program - A grant program for communities to build and strengthen their health information technology (health IT) infrastructure and exchange capabilities. These communities will demonstrate the vision of a future where hospitals, clinicians, and patients are meaningful users of health IT, and together, the community achieves measurable improvements in health care quality, safety, efficiency, and population health. Each of the communities, with its unique population and regional context, is actively pursuing the following areas of focus:

  • Building and strengthening the health IT infrastructure and exchange capabilities within communities, which positions each community to pursue a new level of sustainable health care quality and efficiency over the coming years;
  • Translating investments in health IT in the short run to measureable improvements in cost, quality and population health, and;
  • Developing innovative approaches to performance measurement, technology, and care delivery to accelerate evidence generation for new approaches.

Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Electronic Health Records (EHR) Incentive Program - Under HITECH, eligible health care professionals and hospitals can qualify for Medicare and Medicaid incentive payments when they adopt certified EHR technology and use it to achieve specified objectives, or "Meaningful Use". To achieve Meaningful Use, EHR technologies must have certain technical capabilities, and providers must meet the specified objectives and measures. Meaningful Use objectives encourage common technical capabilities, use of those capabilities, and electronic information exchange by participants in the EHR Incentive Program.

State Health Information Exchange Cooperative Agreement Program - A grant program to support States or State Designated Entities (SDEs) in establishing health information exchange (HIE) capability among healthcare providers and hospitals in their jurisdictions. The State HIE Cooperative Agreement Program funds states' efforts to rapidly build capacity for exchanging health information across the health care system both within and across states. Awardees are responsible for increasing connectivity and enabling patient-centric information flow to improve the quality and efficiency of care. Key to this is the continual evolution and advancement of necessary governance, policies, technical services, business operations, and financing mechanisms for HIE over each state, territory, and SDE's four-year performance period. This program builds on existing efforts to advance regional and state-level health information exchange while moving toward nationwide interoperability.