Resource of the month: Electronic Health Records

This collection of resources highlights information and materials on EHRs available to APAPO members.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has spent more than $25 billion to date promoting the adoption and expansion of health information technology and the use of electronic health records (EHRs). The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, which was enacted as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, made meaningful use of interoperable EHRs a national goal and provides incentive payments to further the adoption and expansion of EHRs. 

Psychologists are currently ineligible for incentive payments under the HITECH Act. Psychology leaders took the issue to Capitol Hill during the March 2014 State Leadership Conference, calling on members of Congress to amend HITECH and include psychologists among providers who are eligible for incentive payments. Psychologists should begin exploring the adoption of EHRs in order to participate in evolving systems of care. For more information about the push to make psychologists eligible for HITECH Act incentive payments, visit the Health Information Technology section of Practice Central. 

APAPO has compiled a set of resources in the Technology and Electronic Health Records section on our Practice Central website for practitioners interested in learning more about EHRs or beginning the process of EHR adoption and use. 

The Electronic Health Records section of this website includes content such as 10 Tips for Selecting an Electronic Health Record System (PDF, 250KB) from the Fall 2013 issue of Good Practice magazine. This article provides 10 pointers to help practitioners navigate the complicated process of selecting an EHR. The article includes a selection tool for comparing functionality, vendor services and support, and cost for up to five different EHR vendors. The Spring/Summer 2013 issue of Good Practice magazine included Keeping Electronic Health Records Private and Secure (PDF, 270KB), an article that provides practical guidance for psychologists on issues related to privacy and security, and understanding the lingo and requirements that go along with both. 

The section also includes a video primer on EHRs, a quiz to help you determine how much you already know about these systems and more. 

If you have additional questions regarding health information technology, contact the APA Practice Directorate’s  Practice Research & Policy Department or the Office of Legal & Regulatory Affairs.