ACMSS Opposes Weakening of HITECH Act Standards on Meaningful Use

ACMSS Opposes Weakening of HITECH Act Standards on Meaningful Use


ACMSS Opposes Weakening of HITECH Act Standards on Meaningful Use

Executive Director, American College of Medical Scribe Specialists
(800) 987-3692

ORANGE, Calif., February 7, 2018. The spending bill being considered today for passage before tomorrow’s deadline for another government shutdown contains many positive healthcare add-ons, such as extending funding for community health centers. However, the American College of Medical Scribe Specialists (ACMSS) opposes a new bill, H.R. 3120, attached to the spending bill that would weaken the meaningful use provisions of the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act.

Rep. Michael Burgess (R-TX), introduced the add-on legislation, which is co-sponsored by Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D-MI), Congressman Patrick Tiberi (R-OH), and Congressman Mike Thompson (D-CA). Its goal is to reduce the volume of future electronic health record-related significant hardship requests, and reduce documentation burdens on providers.  The one paragraph bill seeks to accomplish this by eliminating part of a sentence in the 2009 HITECH Act that requires the HHS secretary to create “more stringent measures of meaningful use over time.”

In a prepared statement about the bill, Rep. Burgess stated, “Electronic health records place an enormous burden on physicians, and have failed to live up to their promise to improve health care delivery for patients.”  While ACMSS agrees in principle with that statement, it opposes loosening meaningful use regulations.

“ACMSS believes there is a better way to relieve EHR documentation burdens and optimize the value of the EHR to patients and providers without weakening vital legislation,” said ACMSS Executive Director Kristin Hagen. “ACMSS is committed to a continued transformation toward a value-based, patient-centric, patient-safe healthcare system, and Physician/Certified Medical Scribe Specialist working together in teams are key to that evolution.

Certified Medical Scribe Specialists help practitioners stay focused on providing quality patient-centered care, while charting patient encounters, entering orders, reducing physician burnout, and enabling physicians to delegate myriad of advanced skills and duties for maximum patient care, time and reimbursement, while assisting in innovating clinical/non-clinical workflows that require additional advanced and detailed documentation. If not the licensed clinician themselves, medical scribe personnel must be certified and credentialed annually. The ACMSS credentialing program assure physicians those attested with the CMSS credential are utilizing tech-savvy clinical documentation experts to meet ongoing clinical measures of CEHRT and maximize reimbursement for the providers.”

ACMSS supports giving rise to the use of electronic health records true meaning for the patient, the provider and the system as a whole. In 2018, ACMSS will be addressing truly “meaningful” use, and what it means for the future of an evolving, 21st century innovative healthcare system that is focused on prevention, wellness and disease reversal, building our patient-centric healthcare system. This will be accomplished by launching our new “What is ‘Meaningful’ Use?” series online, and augmenting it with regional and national educational programs presented with its newly formed non-profit partner, the American College of Clinical Documentation Outcomes (ACCDO).

“The intent of the HITECH Act is one of ACMSS/ACCDO’s highest priorities—promoting the adoption and meaningful use of health information technology,” said ACMSS Executive Director Kristin Hagen. “Efforts to weaken meaningful use takes our evolving 21st century health system backward, not in the forward direction we need to keep moving.”

The American College of Medical Scribe Specialists is the nation’s only nonprofit professional society representing more than 20,000 Medical Scribes in over 2,100 medical institutions. ACMSS works continually with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on compliance issues and is a member of the CMS “Clinician Voices” group, advocating for advances in national standards. ACMSS partners with academic institutions, non-profit partners, and medical scribe corporations to offer both education-to-certification and employment-to-certification pathways. ACMSS advances the needs of the Certified Medical Scribe Specialist industry through certification, public advocacy, secure innovative systems design, individualized and customized consulting, and continuing education for improved care coordination and patient-centric care toward wellness.  

ACMSS offers several pathways for Certified Medical Scribe Specialists. Certification and credentialing licenses the individuals for 12-months through national stakeholder partnership with CMS through Certified Medical Scribe Specialists (CMSS) credentials. Licensed materials are included in the certification and compliance program. ACMSS is an appointed member of CMS Clinicians Voices. Please contact ACMSS Executive Director Kristin Hagen, CMSS, CPHIMS, directly at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 800-987-3692 if you have any questions regarding the ACMSS program and/or materials.

ACMSS offers competitive programs and packages for all providers and healthcare systems, enterprise wide, with affordable payment plans. Inquire Accounting Services for additional information at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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