Meaningful Use Stage 2 NPRM Means New Opportunities for Medical Device and Non-traditional Health IT Vendors

Shahid N. Shah | The Healthcare IT Guy | March 4, 2012

...Meaningful Use Stage 1 was mostly about setting the bare minimum electronic health record functional requirements and pegging a “floor” for data capture; it had many required elements a few optional elements for care providers to utilize (but vendors had to make even the optional functionality available for use). While vendors had some work to do to get certified, MU Stage 1 criteria was carefully selected to ensure availability of software (which is plentiful now) so it wasn’t too painful for the market in general.

The proposed Stage 2 criteria is primarily focus on increasing structured electronic capture of health information and fostering data exchange at points of care transitions by turning most of the optional items from Stage 1 into required elements so only a few new, mostly evolutionary, requirements have been introduced.

While Stage 1 did take some work on the part of vendors from a software development and certification point of view, MU Stage 2 will be pretty easy for vendors because very little new functionality has been added to the requirements and the new certification requirements will probably allow a “gap certification” capability meaning if you’ve already been certified for certain modules / functions you’ll be able to certify for what’s new and not recertify everything...