Federal Government Approves NCQA’s eCQM Test Methodology

Testing method can now be used as part of the current ONC Heath IT Certification Program

June 26, 2017

WASHINGTON, DC—The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) is proud to announce NCQA’s electronic clinical quality measure (eCQM) testing method is an approved alternative to the existing test method (i.e., testing with Cypress) used in the ONC Health IT Certification Program.

NCQA’s eCQM tool is the only industry-developed testing method for health information technology (health IT) currently approved by ONC for use in the Program.

“The approval of NCQA’s eCQM testing method is a first step toward further diversifying the suite of test methods used as part of the ONC Health IT Certification Program,” said Steven Posnack, M.S., M.H.S., Director, Office of Standards and Technology in a blog post. “Together, we can continue to make the certification process more efficient for developers and ultimately, more effective for the providers who use their health IT to care for patients.”

“We continue to believe that we offer the industry a much higher standard of validation for electronic quality measures with our robust testing/audit approach,” said Rick Moore, Chief Information Officer, NCQA. “We are eager to assist the industry in holding itself to a higher standard of measure validation.”

In addition to its rigorous methodology being accepted as an equivalent approach, NCQA is in the process of gaining ONC approval as an ONC-Authorized Testing Lab (ONC-ATL).

This would mean NCQA-generated test results could be used by health IT developers for applicable ONC Health IT Certification Program eCQM certification criteria and in NCQA programs (like NCQAs Recognition Program for Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH)).

This efficient reuse of test results will facilitate health care providers’ participation in state-based programs and other Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) programs, including automatic full credit in the “Improvement Activities” category in the Merit-based Incentive Payment System.

For more information visit NCQA’s eMeasure Certification website.

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