Wednesday, December 8, 2010

AHRQ HealthIT Update -- NIST Partners with ONC and AHRQ to Deliver Guidance on EHR Usability

Crossed my desk this afternoon ...

NIST Partners with ONC and AHRQ to Deliver Guidance on EHR Usability

Two new publications from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) intended to help developers of software and computer systems improve the ease of use of electronic health records (EHRs) are now available as part of a federal effort led by HHS’s Office of The National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC). Health care providers are encouraged to adopt and use EHRs that can bring about broad quality improvements and cost savings in the health care system. Efforts to improve the usability of EHRs are widely recognized as key to achieving widespread adoption and meaningful use of these systems. For questions about these reports, please contact Ben Stein (; 301-975-3097). Select to access each report:

1.     NIST Guide to the Processes Approach for Improving the Usability of Electronic Health Records (NISTIR 7741) (PDF file; PDF help)
2.     Customized Common Industry Format Template for Electronic Health Record Usability Testing (NISTIR 7742) (PDF file; PDF help).
In addition, a recent AHRQ report identified gaps in the processes and practices used by EHR vendors to ensure the usability of their products. One key finding from the report highlighted the lack of standard approaches and formats for testing and reporting usability of EHR products across the industry. Select to access the report (PDF file; PDF help).  


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