ONC releases new resources for interoperability rules: A timeline of key compliance dates 

The HHS Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT on Jan. 4 released new resources and guidelines for requirements related to its upcoming information-blocking rules.

Last March, HHS finalized two interoperability rules issued by ONC and CMS to support the MyHealthEData Initiative and 21st Century Cures Act. ONC's final rule establishes new regulations to prevent information-blocking practices by providers, health IT developers, health information exchanges and health information networks. The rule also aims to give patients more access to their health information via smartphone apps of their choice. 

Here is a timeline of key dates of compliance for the new rules:

April 5, 2021: Assurances condition of certification; health IT developers are prohibited from interfering with a user's ability to access or use certified capabilities for any purpose within the tech's certification.

April 5, 2021: Communications condition of certification; developers cannot prevent or restrict communications about certain performance aspects of health IT and related business practices. Developers can impose certain types of limited restrictions that create a balance between the need to promote open communication about health IT with the need to protect business interests of developers and others.

April 5, 2021: Communications maintenance of certification; developers must amend their contracts/agreements that contravene the requirements of the Communications condition of certification put in place June 30, 2020.

April 5, 2021: Application programming interfaces condition and maintenance of certification; API developers with certified tech must be in compliance with the API condition of certification requirements.

April 5, 2021: Information blocking condition of certification; developers are prohibited from information blocking.

Dec. 15, 2021: Real world testing condition and maintenance of certification; developers must successfully test the real-world use of their interoperability tech in their appropriate market cases. Testing plans must be made publicly available through the Certified Health IT Products List.

Jan. 1, 2022: Medicaid's Promoting Interoperability Program sunsets, which leaves certain support measures maintained by the program no longer included as part of the ONC Health IT Certification Program.

April 1-30, 2022: Attestations maintenance of certification; the first of two yearly attestations begins April 1 and will be accepted by ONC through April 30. Health IT developers must send their attestations in to show they have met certification requirements.

Dec. 31, 2022: Standardized APIs for patient and population services; developers must provide standardized access to single patient and multiple patient services via an API using the Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources Release 4.0.1 standard and several additional standards and implementation specifications.

Dec. 31, 2022: Privacy and security transparency attestations; developers must attest "yes" or "no" to the new encrypt authentication credentials and multi-factor authentication certification criteria.

Dec. 31, 2022: Developers who are currently certified to the 2015 edition version of the certification criteria must have the following sections updated: clinical document architecture companion guide, electronic prescribing, support security tags, care plan attestation, privacy and security criteria and application access data category requests.

March 15, 2023: Real world testing condition and maintenance of certification; developers must make their testing results from calendar year 2021 publicly available.

Dec. 31, 2023: Electronic health information export; developers of certified health IT modules must electronically export all the EHI that can be stored at the time of its product certification.

Click here to view the full list of new resources.


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