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ONC Regulation FAQs

#12 Question [09-10-012-2]

How many clinical quality measures (CQMs) must EHR technology be capable of calculating in order to get certified?

Answer:

It depends.

First, it depends on whether the EHR technology is being certified to the 2011 or 2014 Edition EHR certification criteria. Second, it depends on whether the EHR technology is designed to be used in an ambulatory setting or in an inpatient setting as we have adopted specific requirements for each setting to correspond to the correlated meaningful use requirements that eligible professionals (EPs), eligible hospitals (EHs), and critical access hospitals (CAHs) must satisfy.

2011 Edition EHR Certification Criteria Answer:

For EHR technology designed for an ambulatory setting, it must be tested and certified as being compliant with all 6 of the core (3 core and 3 alternate core) clinical quality measures specified by CMS for eligible professionals as well as at a minimum 3 of the additional clinical quality measures CMS has identified for eligible professionals.

For EHR technology designed for an inpatient setting, it must be tested and certified as being compliant with all of the clinical quality measures specified by CMS for eligible hospitals and critical access hospitals.

The Standards and Certification Criteria July 2010 final rule provides a more detailed discussion of this issue at 75 FR 44610. Additionally, eligible health care providers should be aware that ONC–Authorized Testing and Certification Bodies (ONC-ATCBs) and ONC-Authorized Certification Bodies (ONC-ACBs) are required to report to the National Coordinator (among other data) the clinical quality measures to which a Complete EHR or EHR Module has been tested and certified, and further, that the Complete EHR or EHR Module developer would need to make sure this information is available and communicated to prospective purchasers as part of the Complete EHR or EHR Module’s certification.

2014 Edition EHR Certification Criteria Answer:

EHR technology may be separately tested and certified, according to applicable standards, to: (1) capture and export CQMs (45 CFR 170.314(c)(1)); (2) import and calculate CQMs (45 CFR 170.314(c)(2)); and (3) electronically submit CQMs to CMS (45 CFR 170.314(c)(3)).

EHR technology may be tested and certified to meet 45 CFR 170.314(c)(1) and/or (2) for only one CQM. However, to meet the Base EHR definition:

  • EHR technology designed for an ambulatory setting must be tested and certified to 45 CFR 170.314(c)(1) and (2) for no fewer than 9 CQMs covering at least 3 domains from the set selected by CMS for EPs, including at least 6 CQMs from the recommended core set identified by CMS.
  • EHR technology designed for an inpatient setting must be tested and certified to 45 CFR 170.314(c)(1) and (2) for no fewer than 16 CQMs covering at least 3 domains from the set selected by CMS for EHs and CAHs.

 

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