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ASCRS Joins with Medical Community in Response to CMS’ Request for Information (RFI) Regarding EHR Interoperability

This week, ASCRS joined with the medical community in a response to an RFI from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and CMS regarding a requirement in MACRA that HHS develop metrics for measuring EHR interoperability. The RFI acknowledges that interoperability is crucial to improving health care delivery, but notes that while many EHR vendors claim their systems are interoperable, many only exchange information in a way that at a minimum satisfies Meaningful Use requirements. Due to this, the RFI response cautions CMS from falsely interpreting current EHR use as a benchmark for interoperability. Further, the comments contend that current Meaningful Use requirements are poor metric for interoperability, by being too focused on the quantity of information moved and not the relevance of these exchanges. The comments urge CMS to focus the Advancing Care Information category of MIPS—which replaces Meaningful Use—on interoperability by developing on specialty-specific interoperability use cases rather than the quantity of data exchanged. This would also serve to reduce physician burden and relieve ONC from needing to identify additional data sources for interoperability evaluation.