Health Information Technology

How User-Friendly Is Your EHR? - 08/16/2019

To help you prevent these types of errors in your practice, TMA has created a Technology and Patient Safety webpage that includes articles, interactive tools, manuals, and guidelines on how to make your electronic health record (EHR) technology safer. Use it to find information on contracting with EHR vendors, implementing or switching systems, and keeping your system secure.

Q&A: SeattleMamaDoc Wendy Sue Swanson, MD, Headlines TexMed 2019 - 08/02/2019

Digital innovator, Seattle pediatrician Wendy Sue Swanson, MD, will share her expertise at the May 17 opening general session at TexMed 2019 in Dallas. The title of Dr. Swanson’s talk: “How Technology is Transforming Health Care and the Physician-Patient Relationship.” Her answer to that question: “Rapidly and at a pace that’s hard for us to keep up.”

Why Strong Passwords Are Important - 05/30/2019

Passwords are an early line of defense in protecting your patient data and an easy fix to strengthening your protections.

Security Alert: Are Your Browsers Vulnerable to POODLE? - 05/30/2019

Many of us take for granted that if we’re diligent about keeping our systems current with the latest security updates, we’re protected from threats. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case.

HIPAA: Are You Prepared for a Patient Complaint? - 05/30/2019

The most common type of patient HIPAA complaint stems from interpersonal relationships and conflicts. Do you know what do if you receive a patient HIPAA complaint?

HIPAA Compliance Requires Continuous Monitoring - 05/30/2019

HIPAA security compliance means not only preventing compromised protected health information but also recognizing when it happens and being able to discover what went wrong.

20 Everyday HIPAA Tips(1) - 05/30/2019

The goal of HIPAA is to make sure the protected health information you are responsible for or come into contact with remains confidential, secure, and available when you need it. Here are basic steps every practice can take to help make this happen.

Section 1: Let Doctors Be Doctors - 02/01/2019

Stretched to the Limit: There came a moment when all the clicking on boxes, filling out forms, and waiting on hold was just too much for Houston internist Lisa Ehrlich, MD. The time and energy spent on all of these seemingly endless tasks meant she could not give nearly enough to her patients.

Switching EHRs? Turn to TMA for Help - 12/06/2018

There are many things to consider when looking at a new EHR, including price, which functions suit your practice’s needs, and which vendors offer the right ones. If you’re considering switching to a new EHR, the Texas Medical Association has information and resources to help you make an informed decision.   

TMA Member Benefits: Future Proof - 12/04/2018

TMA Member Benefits: Future Proof In the past year, cyberattacks on healthcare facilities have increased by 35%. The cost of a breach can be huge: an average of $402 per compromised record, plus fines. TMA makes robust security for your practice easy through education and services designed to manage the worst technology risks.   Not a TMA member?  Here's what members are saying about the services that TMA provides:   By joining TMA, you have access to a variety of resources to help secure your practice online: Articles and Resources: Cyber Threat Invading Texas Puts Patient Records at Risk – TMA News Release, 2016 The Rise of Ransomware – Texas Medicine, 2016 Is a Ransomware attack at HIPAA Breach? – E-Tips, 2016 Getting Patient Data From Your EHR: What Does Your Contract Say? – Action, 2016 Electronic Health Record (EHR) Comparison Tool identifies the best EHR for your practice. TMA Endorsed Vendors : DocbookMD: is a HIPPA-secure messag...

New Tool Helps With HIPAA Compliance - 10/30/2018

An upgraded tool from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) might make HIPAA security risk assessments easier. The Security Risk Assessment Tool 3.0 is designed to help practices with one to 10 physicians identify their risks and vulnerabilities with electronic protected health information (ePHI) and then implement appropriate security measures.

Before You Sign: 10 Tips for Tech Contracts - 08/31/2018

A few modifications to your vendor contract can help you avoid much of the risk associated with buying technology. Here are 10 things to consider.

Texas Physicians Adjust to Electronic Communication - 06/25/2018

  Texas physicians adjust to electronic communication.

TMA Supports Privacy Law Clarification on Training Requirements - 04/26/2018

The 2011 Texas Legislature passed House Bill 300, with TMA’s support. We recognize the leadership of Chair Nelson, who has been involved with every privacy bill this state has passed, including House Bill 300 sponsored by the chair of House Public Health Committee, Rep. Lois Kolkhorst. HB 300 further strengthened the state law protecting the privacy of Texans’ medical records. That law, however, unintentionally created some questions for physician practices in their attempt to comply fully with the new training requirements.

TMA Supports Privacy Protections - 04/20/2018

SB 1610 eliminates legal confusion by setting a single Texas standard for the elements for compliance. In those rare but very unfortunate instances when we have to notify patients that the privacy of their medical records may have been breached, SB 1610 eliminates the daunting task of complying with multiple, constantly changing laws passed in other states. We don’t need to rely on other state legislatures to protect and inform our patients, and to direct the Texas health care system.

Check Your EHR Certification Compliance for Meaningful Use, MACRA - 04/19/2018

It's important to make sure your systems are compliant with the electronic health record (EHR) certification requirements for the meaningful use program and the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA). Certification ensures the EHR has all the necessary capabilities, functionalities, and security required so physicians can successfully attest to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) programs. Physicians must use at least a 2014-certified EHR to meet the meaningful use requirements for the 2017 program year. In 2018, physicians must have an EHR that meets the 2015 certification requirements for MACRA.  

Blue Cross Reverses Preauth Requirements — Payer Newsletter Excerpt - 04/19/2018

As a result of “feedback from the provider community,” Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas has removed 111 procedure codes from its preauthorization requirements related to additional care categories of codes.

Telemedicine Care Under Bill Would Match In-Person Medical Care Standards - 04/19/2018

Today, telemedicine is largely viewed by many as the service itself. In the long term — and maybe not so long — telemedicine becomes not the service but another means for physicians to provide necessary and covered care … another tool in the doctor toolbox. This bill is very important in advancing this effort. And we want to be sure that we establish a good framework so that physicians have the ability to use telemedicine — appropriately and safely — for the benefit of their patients.

EHR Customization Can Threaten Patient Safety - 04/19/2018

EHRs can be helpful in managing patient records, and they can provide easy access to clinical data — especially when customized to a practice’s workflow and specific needs. But poor management and improper implementation of customizations can lead to safety risks.

Too Many Babies by C-Section? - 04/19/2018

Texas Medical Association’s Texas Medicine magazine, the association’s official publication now completely accessible to reporters, covers several important topics this month.

Medical Devices: The Next Weak Link in Cyber Security - 04/19/2018

In the wake of the recent worldwide “WannaCry” ransomware attack, you may be thinking about how you can protect your practice’s data from invasion. Have you thought about medical devices?

Six Ways to Increase Practice Portal Sign-Ups - 04/19/2018

Many Texas practices have a patient portal but report that patients are not signing up to use it. Here are some tips that have worked for other practices around the country.

TMA Survey Finds Most Physicians Use Electronic Records - 04/19/2018

A newly released Texas Medical Association (TMA) survey of the state’s physicians shows nearly three-quarters of them are using an electronic health record (EHR) to capture your health information.

Text Orders Securely and Within Guidelines - 04/19/2018

The Joint Commission now says it’s OK to text orders, with certain requirements. If you do send orders via text messaging, be sure to establish guidelines in writing in your practice’s policies and procedures manual.

New App Links Veterans to Resources - 04/19/2018

You can connect your Texas military veteran patients to local, state, and national resources, including crisis hotlines, with the new Texas Veterans App from the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. The app can be downloaded from Google Play and the Apple App Store.