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Concerned about EHR Certifications

October 31, 2011
by root
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I opened the latest issue to review the IT Survey and was absolutely shocked… Your magazine has supported the federal government's initiative for EHR certification and that is wonderful. Your readership looks to you to support critical decisions and that chart on pp. 14-15 is designed to help them make what has been a very difficult decision.

Yet you allowed vendors to attest that they WILL become certified. That will provide many of these vendors that basically will never get certified a somewhat reputable chart to put in front of uneducated, confused buyers.

The [Survey's] allowance of a red block for people that SAY they will be certified in TWO years is nothing short of your support of their puffery. It supports what they are NOT allowed to say in the market in their sales pitches. The intention or desire to be certified is vastly different than being certified. To depict them so similarly is disrespectful to vendors that have made the investment to become certified …

-Bill Connors, CEO, Sequest Technologies, Lisle, Ill.

BH Editor: We added a “Certification” category for electronic health records (EHRs) in the IT Survey (see September issue) because those who pursue Meaningful Use incentive funds must do so using an EHR system certified as “complete.”

To fill out this category, we asked all EHR vendors:

  • What type of certification, if any, does your EHR product have at present?

  • If not certified, is certification in progress or planned and, if so, what type?

We presented this information in three columns: 1) EHRs now certified (as of Aug. 1), 2)EHRs for which certification is in process or planned for yearend 2011, or 3) those with certs planned for yearend 2012.

We made no distinction between “current” and “planned” certifications because EHR certs are added daily, yet we publish the IT survey just once per year. For those considering EHRs, we felt that any detail about vendor intent to certify was better than none.

Readers can validate vendors' EHR certification claims on the official “Certified HIT Product List” at www.onc-chpl.force/ehrcert and view vendor responses to survey questions using the interactive IT Survey found at

Behavioral Healthcare 2011 October;31(7):8