Stark Introduces Health IT Bill

Source: 
Author: 

House Ways and Means Health Subcommittee Chairman Pete Stark (D-CA) has introduced legislation aimed at overhauling the US healthcare system through advances in technology. The bill would codify the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology within the Health and Human Services Department; create a more transparent process for the development of health IT standards by the end of 2009; establish a voluntary certification process for health IT products; provide immediate funding for health IT infrastructure, training, dissemination of best practices, telemedicine, inclusion of health technology in clinical education, and state grants to promote the use of electronic medical records; provide financial incentives through the Medicare and Medicaid programs to encourage doctors and hospitals to adopt and use certified e-health systems; establish a federal breach notification requirement for health IT and would let patients request an audit trail showing all disclosures of their health information made through an electronic record; change existing laws to include new entities that were not contemplated when federal privacy rules were written as well as entities that do work on behalf of providers and insurers; ban the sale of an individual's health information without their authorization; and would require providers to attain authorization from a patient in order to use their health IT for marketing and fundraising activities. Physicians would be eligible for as much as $65,000 for showing they are meaningfully using health IT and hospitals would be eligible for several million dollars. Incentive payments would continue for several years but would be phased out over time.


Stark Introduces Health IT Bill