FAQ #6 - EHR Compliance Deadline

Healthcare Interoperability FAQ Series

FAQ #1: Has the provider, payer and EHR compliance deadline been
pushed back?


The deadline for provider, payer and EHR compliance with the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, the ONC’s Cures Act Final Rule, was originally scheduled for compliance by April 2022. But due to COVID, and a lot of the challenges that providers are facing as a result of COVID, they’ve adjusted those deadlines. The information blocking rule is effectively the rule that prevents the blocking of information that’s been inherent in this field for a long time, more than a decade.
For example, EHR vendors often have very strict provisions in their contracts that prevent the sharing of information. And ultimately, this information-blocking strategy, which is driven largely by business, and accountability to shareholders have been a real challenge in the field of developing the kind of interoperability that’s needed for improving healthcare services, care coordination and so on. So, that has been shifted slightly to April 2021.
But the actual full implementation of the FHIR standards and the ability for patients to access their information, that’s been shifted to the end of December 2022. And that was originally April 2022. So, it gives a little more time for the actual implementation of those standards that really set the stage for interoperability, and the standards where systems can communicate with the SMART on FHIR standards and with the FHIR API standards. It will include the new US Core Data, that’s about clients or about patients, that is necessary for these systems to be able to exchange and provide access to the patient.
And one of the biggest changes about this particular area is that patients for the first time will be required by law to access their information, regardless of the system, whether it’s a health plan payer, a service provider or an EHR vendor. They have to be able to access their data, from any of those sources using whatever application, mobile application that they want, and without any cost.


Dr. Steve Weatherbee

Dr. Weatherbee has spent decades working in education, behavioral health, public health, and more. He has experienced the unique challenges that exist in this field from multiple disciplines. His work in program evaluation lead him to create eINSIGHT to empower behavioral health service providers to improve client outcomes.