The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT has issued a statement delaying the start of the permanent program for certification of electronic health records until mid-2012. The plan is for the new program to start at the same time as the anticipated final rule for stage 2 of meaningful use.
In the statement, released by National Health IT Coordinator Dr. Farzad Mostashari, the ONC says that they do not anticipate a sufficient number of accredited testing laboratories until the summer of 2012.
The net result of the announcement is that the temporary certification process that is currently in effect will be extended through the release of the final rule for stage 2 of meaningful use. They believe that “aligning the sunset of the temporary certification program with the effective date of the final rule” will provide certainty to to health care providers, EHR technology developers and other stakeholders.