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Meaningful Use


The Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) electronic health record (EHR) incentive program will provide payments to eligible professionals and eligible hospitals participating in Medicare and Medicaid programs that adopt and meaningfully use certified EHR technology in three stages. Your LHD will be affected as specific public health criteria for meaningful use (MU) will have implications for LHDs.

NACCHO thanks its members for helping submit comments to CMS and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) about the meaningful use of EHR technology for stage 1 and 2.

  NACCHO Comments
Resources Other
Stage 1
CMS Final Rule Meaningful Use Stage 1 Objectives and Measures
HIT Policy Committee MU Workgroup PH Testimony (3):
Stage 2
Stage 3
Preliminary Thoughts on MU Stage 3 by NACCHO ePublic Health Informatics and BioSurveillance workgroups

Other Resources:

Terms and Vocabulary Related to Meaningful Use:

Meaningful Use (MU): Still pending an official definition from CMS, but ARRA requires that the definition include e-prescribing, the ability to exchange information with other healthcare providers to improve care, and the reporting of clinical quality measures to CMS.

Electronic Health Record (EHR): is a repository of electronically maintained information about an individual''s lifetime health status and healthcare, stored such that it can be accessible to authorized users (e.g., physicians, pharmacists, hospitals, home care) of the record. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) is leading efforts to reach President Bush''s call for most Americans to have electronic health records within 10 years. This initiative is part of the movement to advance electronic health information exchange by making health records digital and interoperable, and ensure that the privacy and security of those records are protected, in a smooth, market-led way. For more information, visit

Personal Health Record (PHR): an electronic record of health information that is maintained, controlled, and shared by patient-consumer.

Interoperability: according to the Interoperability Clearing House, "interoperability is the ability of information systems to operate in conjunction with each other encompassing communication protocols, hardware software, application, and data compatibility layers. With interoperable electronic health records, always-current medical information could be available wherever and whenever the patient and attending health professional needed it. At the same time, EHRs would also provide access to treatment information to help clinicians as they care for patients." For more information, visit and

For more health information technology terms »

Archived Webinars:

An LHD & REC Plan Webinar, Feb. 29, 2012: Did you miss the Local Health Department (LHD) & Regional Extension Center (REC) Plan webinar on Feb. 29, 2012? Representatives from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology REC program and Cuyahoga County Department of Health highlighted how RECs and LHDs have discovered ways to tackle meaningful use and incentive payments. Follow the link to download the webinar (this is a large file and may take a few minutes to load). Download »

LHDs and Electronic Health Records, June 29, 2012: Why should your local health department adopt and use electronic health records (EHRs)? Did you miss the June 29, 2011, webinar that spotlighted Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department and Marion County Health Department use of EHRs and how it has improved their public health practice? Follow the link to download the webinar (this is a large file and may take a few minutes to load). Download »

What Local Health Departments Need to Know About Meaningful Use, Feb. 16, 2011: If you were unable to view the Feb. 16, 2011 webinar hosted by NACCHO and Netsmart Technologies, you can view the slides and hear the audio by clicking on the more link. View »