Health IT information blocking penalties start Sept. 1

HHS will begin enforcing health IT information blocking penalties Sept. 1.

Under the 21st Century Cures Act final rule published in June, certified health IT developers and entities and health information exchanges and networks can be penalized up to $1 million for interfering with the access, exchange and use of electronic health information.

"The rule includes a provision requiring that patients can electronically access all of their electronic health information (EHI), structured and/or unstructured, at no cost," ONC said.

HHS' Office of the Inspector General said it will prioritize serious cases, such as those that cause patient harm, significantly affect a provider's ability to deliver care, and cause losses to federal healthcare programs.

There are eight exceptions to information sharing, including privacy, security and preventing harm. 

HHS is developing a separate rule for healthcare providers.

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