How-to resources on requirements of meaningful use and its standards and certification rules soon on the internet

A group advising the Health and Human Services Department wants to post guidelines and how-to resources on the Internet to help providers and vendors meet the requirements of meaningful use and its standards and certification rules.

The goal is to assemble a digital library where a provider could click to find details on what is needed to meet each provision or section of the rules, such as transmission standards for health information exchange, said Aneesh Chopra, chairman of the Health IT Standards Committee implementation work group and White House chief technology officer.

The panel’s blog could be at least an initial location for posting resources, he said.

“Having a resource section on the blog is something we can turn on quickly and easily,” Chopra said at the panel’s meeting March 30. The panel will make its recommendations to the standards committee when it meets April 28. The panel may propose a formal how-to site.

Chopra described the blog resource page as part of a “starter kit” to help providers become meaningful users in 2011 to qualify for incentives under the HITECH Act. Providers at a recent hearing told the work group that they needed more explanation about how to comply with requirements.

Liz Johnson, a panel member and vice president for clinical informatics at Tenet Healthcare, said that providers “are looking for clear, simple, how-to answers.”

There are a lot of resources available from various organizations and HHS, she said, but they are not coordinated or indexed and are hard to find “unless you’ve been following this closely.”

Regional health IT extension centers and state health information exchanges will be publishing content for education for providers once they are operating, said Linda Fischetti, chief informatics officer at the Veterans Health Administration and panel member.

Government can also take a role in coordinating all the information and feedback from social media about the information’s effectiveness. “We need gap analysis of what’s not out there,” Fischetti said.

Besides publishing the how-to information on its blog, the panel can pass on to Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT feedback from providers using the resources about issues of their understanding of capabilities, for example, that the model for the nationwide health information supports providers’ needs, Chopra said.