HIMSS Electronic Health Record Vendors Association Collaborates on Response to CCHIT Phase One Report

HIMSS EHRVA Submits Unprecedented EHR Vendor Agreement in Response to EHR Certification Proposals.

CHICAGO – (May 31, 2005) – The HIMSS Electronic Health Record VendorsAssociation (EHRVA), a 33 member coalition of leading electronic health record (EHR) vendors, has submitted its consensus response to the Certification Commission on Health Information Technology’s (CCHIT) Phase One work products.

EHRVA members organized four groups to review the reports on functionality, security and reliability, interoperability and certification process issued by CCHIT on April 18, 2005. The responses provided by the EHRVA represent the consensus of its membership on more than 200 separate items agreed upon by EHRVA members as being of critical importance to a practical and effective certification process.

“I was amazed at the number of issues on which EHR vendors have similar concerns, regardless of their company size or market penetration,” said Randall Oates, President of SOAPware. “The review process was collaborative and it helped raise awareness and understanding regarding EHR certification which will impact all EHR providers.”

EHRVA summarized its recommendations in a separate letter to CCHIT chairman Mark Leavitt, M.D., Ph.D., which can be found on the EHRVA web site at http://www.himssehrva.org/docs/CCHIT_doc_Phase1.pdf. Among its recommendations, EHRVA encouraged the Commission to modify its process to allow adequate time for CCHIT workgroups to evaluate public responses and engage in further dialog with EHRVA and other stakeholders. “Our members have delivered important feedback to CCHIT,“ said Charlene Underwood, HIMSS EHRVA chairperson and Director, Government and Industry Relations for Siemens Medical Solutions . “Because EHR certification is so important to increasing the adoption of EHRs, we take this process very seriously and made the commitment to devote the necessary resources to develop a thorough, credible response.”

Recognizing the complexity of developing a process that addresses both the technical complexity and the unique needs of the multiple stakeholders in this process, EHRVA recommended that the Commission consider modifying its process to both provide adequate time for CCHIT workgroups to evaluate public responses and to engage in further dialog with EHRVA and other stakeholders.


HIMSS EHRVA is a trade association of Electronic Health Record (EHR) vendors who have joined together to lead the HIT industry in the accelerated adoption of electronic health records in hospital and ambulatory care settings in the US. The association provides a forum for the EHR vendor community to speak with a unified voice relative to standards development, the EHR certification process, interoperability, performance and quality measures, and other EHR issues as they become subject to increasing government, insurance and provider driven initiatives and requests. Membership is open to HIMSS corporate members with legally formed companies designing, developing and marketing their own commercially available EHRs with installations in the USA.

The association, comprised of 33 member companies, is a partner of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) and operates as an organizational unit within HIMSS. For more information , visit http://www.himssehrva.org