A number of federal policies, including the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), and now the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA), advance the use of digital health information in our 21st century health care system. The National Partnership is a widely recognized voice for consumers and has consistently provided the leadership, strategy and recommendations for how digital health should be integrated in new laws and policies and used to facilitate patient-centered health care.
The National Partnership regularly engages with Congress and federal agencies to improve laws that govern the use of health information technology across our health care system.
MEDICARE ACCESS AND CHIP REAUTHORIZATION ACT (MACRA)
MACRA is intended to accelerate the transition to a health care system that rewards quality and value, rather than volume, and helps ensure that patients experience better care and improved health outcomes. We support the robust use of health information technology in new models of care delivery and payment rolling out under MACRA. Read more about our work on MACRA here.
The Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program, also called the Meaningful Use program, encourages eligible providers to adopt EHRs and “meaningfully” use them to improve patient care. This program has been the most significant policy lever for catalyzing health information technology adoption and use and advancing consumer access and use of electronic health information. The National Partnership played a pivotal role in shaping its provisions for patient engagement and patient-centered uses of health IT. Read more about our position on Meaningful Use at the links below.
- Leading Consumer, Patient, Labor Groups Urge CMS to Maintain Robust Consumer eHealth Requirements (News Release)
- Re: Electronic Health Record Incentive Program—Proposed Modifications to Stages 2 and 3 (Comment Letter)
- Re: Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Electronic Health Record Incentive Program—Stage 3 and Modifications to Meaningful Use in 2015 Through 2017; Final Rule (Comment Letter)
- Consumer, Employer, Health and Other Advocates Emphatically Urge CMS to Keep Stronger Stage 2 Meaningful Use Requirements (News Release)
- Re: Proposed Amendment of Key Patient-Engagement Criteria in Stages 1 and 2 of the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record Incentive Programs (Comment Letter)
- See Resource Library for more
Interoperability is the ability for two systems (or people) to electronically exchange and use data. We believe strongly that efforts to enhance interoperability must include sharing useful information with patients and family caregivers, as well as among providers.
- Leading Consumer Groups Encourage ONC to Include Patients when Assessing Interoperability Under MACRA, in Comments Filed Today (News Release)
- Re: Request for Information on Assessing Interoperability for MACRA (Comment Letter)
- ONC’s Interoperability Roadmap Is a 'Welcome, Powerful and Badly Needed New Plan' that Can Help Patients and Providers Harness the Power of Data for Shared Decision-Making, Women’s Health Leader Says (Press Statement)
- Re: Consumer Partnership for eHealth’s Comments on the draft Shared Nationwide Interoperability Roadmap (Comment Letter)
- See Resource Library for more
PRIVACY AND SECURITY
While many people think of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) as the foundation of health privacy law, it is ultimately a consumer protection law. HIPAA gives patients and authorized caregivers the right to see and get a copy of health information, including an electronic copy in the form and format of the consumer’s choosing. More can be done to inform consumers and providers about HIPAA’s benefits and protections.
- Leading Patient Advocates Commend New HHS Guidance on HIPAA for Encouraging Health Care Providers to Waive Record Request Fees and Support Consumers in Sending Data to Third Parties (News Release)
- Leading Patient Advocates Welcome HHS’ New Guidance on HIPAA (News Release)
- National Partnership on ONC’s Model Privacy Notice
- Precision Medicine Initiative Proposed Privacy and Trust Principles (Comment Letter)
PAST REGULATORY LETTERS
View regulatory comments from the National Partnership prior to 2015.