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The ONC has released a guide for healthcare providers that explains key EHR contract terminology and how certain provisions could impact a physician’s practice.
As more physicians adopt electronic health records (EHRs) at their practice, it’s clear not all are satisfied with their current systems. Recent market surveys show that one in five physicians may switch to a different vendor. Those physicians will not only need a solid understanding of their current vendor contract, but many will also need help negotiating their next one.
The Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) for Health Information Technology at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has made contract negotiations a little easier. The office has released a guide for healthcare providers that explains key contract terminology and how certain provisions could impact a physician’s practice.
But the office emphasizes that this guide is not a substitution for professional legal advice. “Each healthcare organization presents its own unique circumstances. Purchasers should consult an experienced attorney for assistance in contract negotiations,” the report advises.
Here are three of the seven contract terms the report examines:
The ONC guide, which was created by Westat, contains explanations of four other legal terms: Indemnification and Hold Harmless; Confidentiality and “Non-disclosure” Agreements; Warranties and Disclaimers; and Intellectual Property Disputes.