HHS to fight fraud with e-health records

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT awarded RTI International of Research Triangle Park, N.C., a six-month contract to develop model functionalities and requirements for collecting health care data in electronic health records that will help prevent fraud and abuse.

RTI also will plan for the submission, compilation and analysis of data that can be used to reduce the growing number of fraudulent claims to and other improper payments submitted to public and private health care plans.

RTI researchers will work with the American Health Information Management Association and SPSS data analysis software to take a proactive approach to preventing health care fraud.

RTI also is working with the national health IT coordinator's office, which is part of the Health and Human Services Department, to assess variations in state privacy laws that could hinder the exchange of health data.

Most fraud is detected after payment, which makes dealing with the claims very inefficient, said Colleen McCue, a senior research scientist at RTI and project manager.

'If we can detect errors at the time the record is created, we can not only eliminate improper payments, but also improve the quality of care,' she said.

About the Author

Mary Mosquera is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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