Indian Health Service takes the lead on meaningful-use capabilities

The Resource and Patient Management System, the electronic health-record system developed by the Indian Health Service, announced it has been certified as capable of meeting HHS' criteria through which providers can meet meaningful-use targets and receive federal financial incentives for health IT adoption.

Thus, the IHS becomes the first federal agency whose EHR system has achieved certification under the incentive program, according to a news release (PDF). The IHS provides healthcare services to 2 million American Indians and Alaska natives in 35 states.

RPMS, which derives from and remains closely related to the Veterans Affairs Department's VistA EHR system, is used at more than 280 IHS, tribal and urban Indian healthcare sites, according to the IHS.

In addition, an open-source version of RPMS was installed in several dozen federally qualified healthcare clinics in West Virginia, with plans for its use in a nursing informatics program and at a student clinic at Shepherd University in Shepherdstown, W.Va.

“Our certified electronic health record will help us provide quality healthcare delivery to patients in the Indian health system," said IHS Director Dr. Yvette Roubideaux. "The monetary incentives made available by this certification will also benefit IHS, tribal and urban Indian health facilities."

Click in IHS and Meaningful Use to access the original article (basic registration required).