EHRs For Behavioral Health Tough Task

Tom Sullivan | Healthcare IT News | March 11, 2014
Federal policy panel looks at ways to fill the gap

Behavioral health and long-term post-acute care are perhaps the two most significant areas left out of the meaningful use program.

“When we look at the big circle of care, there’s a huge hole — behavioral health,” said Mark Caron, CIO of Capital Blue. “Behavioral health is a mess.”

And at least similar words could be used to describe the status of EHR implementation in many long-term and post-acute care settings.

“The problem is there really is no good definition” of what an EHR is particular to behavioral health and LTPAC units, said Larry Wolf, co-chair of ONC’s certification and adoption workgroup and CIO of Kindred Healthcare, adding that because some health entities' EHR definitions actually pre-date the HITECH Act,  “we have shades of grey that are very important.”