Important meaningful use criteria include engaging patients and family, maintaining security of a patient's health information, and improving the quality, safety and efficiency of health care, according to HealthIT.gov. Other meaningful criteria include improving the coordination of care and public health services.
The objectives of meaningful use compliance include better clinical outcomes; enhanced transparency and efficiency of services, patients and health care workers who are empowered; improved outcomes of population health; and more reliable information and health systems, reports HealthIT.gov. The Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services administers the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs and provides meaningful use specification sheets to hospitals and health care professionals so they better understand the specifications on each requirement and how to meet the objectives.
The objectives were designed to build on each other and develop in three main stages, explains HealthIT.gov. The first stage from 2011 to 2012 was geared toward enhancing the procedures of data gathering and sharing. Stage two in 2014 focused on the advancement of clinical processes, and stage three's objectives were concerned with improved outcomes taking advantage of the previous developments. Meaningful use criteria in stage one focuses on capturing all health information electronically and using it to track key conditions and engage more with patients and family. Specific stage two criteria include more involved information exchange and making available care summaries across multiple platforms. Stage three criteria include increased access to patient self-help tools and more reliable and comprehensive health data.