The ONC has admitted there are some issues with the software used by the organizations that certify medical record companies and software companies for Meaningful Use.
According to Modern Healthcare, the issue is with the “Transport Test Tool” used by the companies that certify medical records for Meaningful Use criteria. The ONC also stated they are working to answer the number of questions and more should be available soon. This is an important issue of course as if the software that is responsible for certifying other software has an issue, well it should be fixed as soon as possible. The software was created by the government and you might guess there are some programmers at this point getting a little heat.
The software is downloaded on to a computer in order to use it, in other words it is not a web based program as it requires a desktop installation. A web based version should be available by the middle of February. It’s the same old issue of support and being able to install the software for part of it. Web based is the way to go if in fact the tool can fully function in that fashion. They do have a help line to guide you through and answer questions.
Complexities continue to rival meeting deadlines today and when there’s bugs in the software, that even adds more time to the process. Vendors have had a few issues too as back in October of 2011, GE Centricity had to fix some bugs in their software so those using their software were delayed a couple months with being able to attest as the fixes had to be rolled out and installed before attesting could take place.
In summary not only do hospitals and doctors face the task of proficiency with electronic medical records, but it appears attesting is going trough it’s growing pains and hopefully the web based version will make it easier as bug and errors are much easier and faster versus having to install a software package. I would also believe that in addition to the ONC information that is forthcoming, the 5 certifying companies will also be making additional information available and they could be the place for medical record vendors to contact for updates.