HHS to reportedly delay enforcement of interoperability rules

HHS is expected to pause the enforcement of its final interoperability rules due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Politico's April 8 Morning eHealth newsletter.

The rules, which were finalized last month, were issued by CMS and ONC; the regulations aim to give patients secure and free access to their health data by requiring health IT developers to adopt standard application programming interfaces. HHS is expected to announce an enforcement discretion of the rules so healthcare stakeholders can focus on the coronavirus response, multiple government officials said, according to Politico.

An HHS spokesperson on April 8 told Becker's Hospital Review that the department's "top priority is protecting the health and well-being of all Americans."

"In light of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 [COVID-19] outbreak, HHS is assessing all its policies across all its programs to strengthen our response and ensure the success of a whole-of-America approach in combatting COVID-19," the email statement reads.

In March, a CMS spokesperson said the agency was evaluating the rule's projected timeline and its API requirements.


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