Lawmakers previously argued a program to develop a national patient identifier could violate privacy issues or raise security concerns, while the medical community and insurers claimed the ban kept them from properly matching patients with the correct medical information–a major issue that health systems are struggling with.
Modern Healthcare: House Votes To Overturn Ban On National Patient Identifier
The U.S. House of Representatives passed a $99.4 billion HHS appropriation bill with several amendments including reversing a longtime ban on developing a national patient identifier, money for hospital emergency departments dealing with opioid overdoses, and a nod to the anti-vaccination controversy. For decades, Congress has prohibited HHS from funding the development or promotion of any national program where patients would receive permanent, unique identification numbers. (Luthi and Cohen, 6/13)
Modern Healthcare: As The Care Continuum Expands, Patient-Matching Remains A Problem Without A Single Solution
Matching patients with their medical information sounds like a simple concept, but it’s not. The practice is plagued by such issues as typos, missing data, similar names and new addresses—resulting in match rates as low as 80% within the same facility, according to the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives. That means 1 in every 5 patients may not be linked with the correct record. It also leads to higher costs. Patient-matching remains a multi- billion-dollar problem in the U.S., with inaccurate patient identification accounting for $1,950 in duplicative medical care costs per inpatient and $1.5 million in denied claims per hospital each year, according to a survey by Black Book. (Cohen, 6/13)
In other news about electronic health records —
Modern Healthcare: VA, Defense Propose New Office For EHR Projects
The Defense and Veterans Affairs Departments plan to create a joint office that will have decision-making authority for their co-developed health record system, leaders told lawmakers on Wednesday. After months of congressional criticsm and requests for a proposed joint governance structure for the massive project, the agencies said they are creating Federal EHR Modernization Program Management Office as a “single point of authority” for EHR projects. (Cohen, 6/12)
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Source : Kaiser Health