I do have to say that ACOs have been a lively topic of discussion, no so much as to what they are to accomplish but the models or methodologies imageto do so have been varied.  One might ask will ACO models take the course of electronic medical records with hundreds of variations?  So this probably a good idea here to create some standards and a model to follow to somewhat keep all on a common path as far as the IT mechanics go and what components of Health IT are either required or best practice modules. 

The necessary players are pretty much defined, but other incidentals could use a little descriptive work as far as who’s the main leader and of course the coordinated information of what’s available with IT resources from all sides.  There’s a lot of work to involving the patients as well and that comes along with education and looks to be a lengthy process with conveying the understanding of what their care looks like as part of an ACO, as bottom lines with patients right now for a big part of it is what is my deductible and what am I going to have to pay out of pocket.  Needless to say this will be interesting to follow to see what is constructed here as a framework as I’m sure once this process gets started there will come a time when new technologies as they do all throughout healthcare today that were perhaps not in an original plan will probably need to be rolled in too, the way the world seems to work today.  BD

The Certification Commission for Health Information Technology (CCHIT) plans to develop an IT framework for accountable care organizations (ACOs). The framework will identify the health IT infrastructure components necessary for a provider organization to function effectively as an ACO and help identify any gaps that would prevent them from meeting their goals as an ACO.

“CCHIT has been the leader in developing criteria, and testing and certifying EHRs, for the past six years.

We also recently became the compliance testing body for a consortium of health information exchanges representing more than half of the U.S. population,” said William Jessee, MD, chair of the CCHIT Board of Trustees. “Building on that, and our successful CCHIT Certified and Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) authorized EHR certification programs, we are looking at other opportunities that will complement our work, and we believe expanding into the ACO environment is one way to do that.”



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