EHRs Must Have Device ID, Pew Tells HHS

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Source: Healthcare IT News

In a letter sent this week to Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell, Pew Charitable Trusts – along with providers such as Geisinger Health System, Intermountain Healthcare and Mercy; patient safety advocates The Leapfrog Group; the American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons and others – argue that medical device tracking in EHRs is essential to "improve patient safety and care quality for the millions of patients" with implanted devices.

"We are asking that the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services include provisions to enable and encourage providers to document the specific medical devices implanted in patients as part of forthcoming rules on the electronic health record certification and meaningful use programs," they wrote.

Under the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's unique device identifier system, established in 2013, each medical device gets a code corresponding to its make and model to definitively identify it. Manufacturers began labeling all high-risk implantable devices with UDIs in 2014; by 2018 all devices will bear a UDI.

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