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CCHIT expands work to cover the PHR

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Earlier in June, the Certification Commission for Healthcare Information Technology, kicking off development of its certification programs for 2009, named co-chairs and members to its 10 EHR Work Groups, as well as a special PHR Advisory Task Force.

“Because PHRs require a new perspective that is patient-centric and consumer focused, we wanted to expand the spectrum of stakeholders beyond those currently represented on the Commission,” said Mark Leavitt, M.D., Ph.D., chair. “The PHR Advisory Task Force will contribute strategic and policy guidance in this new area for us.”

Members of the task force are:

• Co-chairs: Mark Leavitt, CCHIT, and Paul Tang, M.D., Palo Alto Medical Foundation

• Abha Agrawal, M.D., Kings County Hospital Center, Brooklyn, New York

• Richard Benoit, Intel Digital Health Group

• Lorraine Doo, Office of e-Health Standards and Services, CMS

• Steve Findlay, Consumers Union

• Meighan Girgus, American Heart Association

• Theresa Hancock, Veterans and Consumers Health Informatics Office, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

• Leslie Harris, Center for Democracy and Technology

• Missy Krasner, Google Health

• Steve Lampkin, Wal-Mart

• Holly Miller, M.D., University Hospitals, Cleveland, Ohio

• Don Mon, American Health Information Management Association

• Anna Lisa Silvestre, Kaiser Foundation Health Plan

• Michael Stokes, Microsoft Corporation

• Michael Ubl, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota

• Patient representative (to be named)

Volunteers Named to EHR Work Groups

The Commission also named 171 volunteers to its 10 work groups to develop the CCHIT Certified 09 criteria. Besides groups that will update criteria for Ambulatory, Inpatient, and Emergency Department EHRs, and update the optional Child Health and Cardiovascular certifications, new work groups were created for PHRs and Behavioral Health.

Other groups will focus on progress in Interoperability, Security, and Privacy.

All volunteers have been invited to meet at a face-to-face kickoff meeting July 16 – 17 in Chicago. The roster of newly selected work group members is published on the Web site

Applications for the next year’s work in the Health Information Exchange group and a new Long Term Care group will open at a later date. “Once again we received an outpouring of interest in serving on our volunteer panels – overall, we had twice as many applicants as there were slots, and the PHR work group received 6 applications for every opening,” said Dr. Leavitt. “I think this demonstrates the continuing health and vitality of voluntary, consensus-based criteria development as the foundation of our health IT certification program.”


The Certification Commission for Healthcare Information Technology (CCHIT) is an independent, nonprofit organization that has been recognized by the federal government as an official certification body for electronic health record products. Its mission is to accelerate the adoption of health information technology by creating a credible, sustainable product certification program.

The certification requirements are based on widely accepted industry standards and involve the work of hundreds of expert volunteers and input from a variety of stakeholders throughout the health care industry. More information on CCHIT and CCHIT Certified® products is available at