By Darius Tahir | 02/07/2018 10:00 AM EDT
CR CONTAINS A LOT OF HELP FOR HEALTH IT: The House has passed a bill to keep the government running through March 23. If the latest congressional kicking of the can doesn’t have you that excited, perhaps the bill’s more permanent measures might.
The bill includes several provisions promoting various aspects of health IT. It includes large portions of the Senate Finance Committee’s CHRONIC Care Act (S. 870 (115)), which aims to boost chronic care management and telehealth reimbursement for Medicare Advantage plans. The resolution also expands telehealth reimbursement for stroke treatment, among various other enhancements for telehealth.
The bill also tweaks meaningful use regulation, incorporating Rep. Michael Burgess‘s de-escalation bill (HR3120), which removes the HITECH requirement that EHR stimulus asks steadily increase.
Industry groups were universally happy with the bill – while keeping in mind that any changes also have to pass the Senate.
“We are very hopeful these provisions stay in the Senate version. The language is bicameral and bipartisan so we are hopeful,” said the Alliance for Connected Care’s Krista Drobac.
Joel White of Health IT Now said inclusion of the bills was “the beginning of a much-needed shift that will pay dividends in better health care outcomes and reduced costs.”
“We are extremely supportive and have championed each,” said CHIME’s Mari Savickis, who hoped that the telehealth provisions would spur growth. As for the meaningful use escalator clause, “removing it will bring much needed stability and relief to our members,” she concluded.