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Medicare Compliance & CCHIT Certification

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Q: Are you planning on getting CCHIT certification for the software?

A: Maybe. The basic premise of CCHIT is to certify that software meets specific criteria (most of which doesn't apply to a small optometrist office). Many of the features required to meet CCHIT criteria would add thousands of dollars to the cost of our software. Add in the fact that it costs $23,000 for the certificate, plus $4,800 in annual fees and you can see why it's not practical for a small software company. Many of the large medical-oriented EMRs have signed up, but then they charge users many thousands of dollars for their software. You can read a detail description of CCHIT and how it applies to your software selection choices at this site: Should CCHIT Influence Your EHR Selection?

Q: Are you planning on getting government certification for EHR?

A: We are still waiting for the government to issue final standards on what constitutes meaningful use.

Q: Will ezChartWriter be compliant for the Medicare incentive within the next year or two?

A: I'd like to say yes, but we are not sure yet what the government has in mind. Medicare requires certification (but has yet to select a certification agency although CCHIT seems to have the momentum). Most of my customers are "small potato" practices and don't have the resources to invest 10K+ in an EMR system plus hardware. The good news is that most of the CCHIT requirements are met by ezChartWriter (although some are not applicable, like immunizations and "Do Not Resuscitate" orders and such). The main areas we are not compliant in are ePrescribing and HL7 document exchange. The ePrescribing may be added as a partnership with a third-party in the future. So if there is some change in the certification process in the future, it's possible I will submit for it.