Drummond Group and CCHIT Become First Official ONC EHR Certifying Bodies

Posted on August 31, 2010 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

We finally now have the first ONC approved EHR certification bodies (Officially ONC-ATCB or ATCB or ONC Authorized Testing and Certification Body). The first 2 ONC-ATCB are very familiar names that we’ve been talking about on EMR and HIPAA for a long time: Drummond Group and CCHIT.

In an HHS and ONC press release they also noted that “Applications for additional ONC-ATCBs are also under review.”

Drummond Group has already posted information on their website about their EHR certification and testing plans. The most useful item is this 10 page EHR Testing, Pricing and Certification guide (PDF).

Lots of interesting information in the PDF which I’ll likely talk about later. The pricing however is worth noting now. It’s on page 8 of the PDF document and has certification set at $19,500 for the Complete Remote EHR certification and $23,500 plus travel for the Onsite EHR certification tests. There’s also pricing for the modular certification.

I haven’t found any published prices on CCHIT certification, but in the past the CCHIT EHR certification costs were $37,000 for the complete CCHIT certification and $33,000 for the Preliminary ARRA certified EHR.

Looks like we might have a bit of an EHR certification price way on our hands. $20k is still a lot of money for EHR certification, but $10-15k difference is quite a bit of money.

Here’s a short quote from the CCHIT press release about their time frame for accepting EHR certification applications and when we might see the first certified EHR.

CCHIT plans to launch its authorized HHS certification program on September 20 at 1:00 PM Eastern time with a Town Call Web-cast describing its application and testing process. CCHIT will take new health IT developer applications immediately after at http://cchit.org and the first group of HHS certified complete EHRs and EHR modules will be announced within weeks of that launch. More information about the Town Call will be available at http://www.cchit.org/towncalls. The call will be recorded for later viewing.

It will be interesting to see if Drummond Group of CCHIT can produce the first officially certified EHR vendor and which vendor will hold that distinction.

UPDATE: Weno Healthcare looks to be another potential ONC-ATCB (if they get approved) and their EHR certification pricing looks to be in the $14k-$18k range.