What does 'Meaningful Use' Mean for Pediatrics?

Christoph U Lehmann; Jennifer Mansour; Jonathan D Klein


Pediatr Health. 2010;4(4):361-363. 

In This Article

Rule 6: Meaningful Use Regulation should Include Incentives for Partial Implementation

Meaningful use has been divided into stages, and stage one requires the physician to use an EHR that contains all the required elements. Failure to comply in even one category will lead to a failure to qualify for incentives. However, many smaller practices and hospitals will face challenges and obstacles that may make 100% compliance with all measures impossible. To generate the most benefit for children, the AAP believes it is in the best interest of children to support and encourage both full and partial implementation by physicians to qualify for full or partial participation in the incentive process.

One goal of the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is to infuse money into the economy as fast as possible. ONCHIT's meaningful use accomplishes this goal and at the same time advances health information technology in medicine in a dramatic way. However, this regulation was produced under an enormous time pressure, and even though the AAP recognizes the strong leadership and excellent work of the ONCHIT, the AAP believes that there are opportunities for improvement.

Children have a lot to gain from this meaningful use regulation – their specific needs put them at high risk for adverse events and medical errors. EHRs promise increased safety, more data sharing, advanced clinical decision support, reduction of care duplication, and a higher quality of care for children. Children could gain even more from improved regulation. The AAP supports the goals of meaningful use, and looks forward to collaborating with the Office of National Coordinator to improve on the details of this important regulation.


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