October 20, 2021

Volume XI, Number 293

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HHS Extends 21st Century Cures Act Final Rule Compliance Dates for Information Blocking and Health IT Certification Requirements

On October 29, 2020, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) announced it was delaying the compliance deadlines for information blocking and other health IT provisions initially finalized in the “21st Century Cures Act: Interoperability, Information Blocking and the ONC Health IT Certification Program Final Rule” (21st Century Cures Act Final Rule) through the issuance of an Interim Final Rule with Comment Period (IFC).

The 21st Century Cures Act Final Rule implemented provisions containing far-reaching health IT provisions enacted in the 21st Century Cures Act with the goals of achieving widespread interoperability among health IT systems and improving a patient’s ability to access their medical information. Chief among these reforms is a broad prohibition against the practice of information blocking. The 21st Century Cures Act Final Rule implemented the statute by defining information blocking and its exceptions. Most notably, the IFC announced on October 29, 2020 extends the deadline for health care providers, developers of Certified Health IT and health information networks or exchanges to comply with the rule’s information blocking prohibition until April 5, 2021. The extension was granted in connection with the COVID 19 Public Health Emergency, and provides additional time for regulated actors to come into compliance with the 21st Century Cures Act Final Rule as a result of health IT resource shortages caused by the COVID 19 Public Health Emergency.

The IFC is the second extension of the original compliance deadlines originally announced in the 21st Century Cures Act Final Rule. In addition to the extension of the information blocking compliance date, the IFC also extends compliance deadlines for certain ONC Health IT certification requirements also finalized in the 21st Century Cures Act Final Rule. Those delays include an extension of the standardized application programming interface functionality from May 2, 2022 to December 31, 2022. ONC’s summary of the delayed compliance dates for all provisions in the 21st Century Cures Final Rule is provided here.

© Polsinelli PC, Polsinelli LLP in CaliforniaNational Law Review, Volume X, Number 307
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About this Author

Michael Flood, Polsinelli Law Firm, Health Care Attorney
Associate

Michael Flood takes a results-oriented approach to serving his clients’ legislative, regulatory, and policy needs. He is a proactive advocate for his clients on matters involving the U.S. Congress, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and the Food and Drug Administration. Michael assists a broad range of clients including provider associations, patient advocacy groups, and device manufacturers on issues including reimbursement, compliance, and general health reform.

202-626-8363
 Iliana L. Peters Data Privacy Shareholder Polsinelli Law Firm
Shareholder

Iliana L. Peters believes good data privacy and security is fundamental to ensuring patients’ trust in the health care system, and to helping health care clients succeed in an ever-changing landscape of threats to data security. She is recognized by the health care industry as a preeminent thinker and speaker on data privacy and security, particularly with regard to HIPAA, the HITECH Act, the 21st Century Cures Act, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA), the Privacy Act, and emerging cyber threats to health data.

For over a decade...

202.626.8327
Associate

In a regulatory environment where even the most minor details matter, Rebecca Frigy Romine thrives on helping clients find practical and creative solutions and action plans.

Her practice focuses on many facets of the general health care business with a specific emphasis on the privacy and security of health information and medical staff issues.

Rebecca has significant experience in and frequently writes on these topics and remains abreast of regulatory changes and best practice.

314-889-7013
Adrienne A. Testa Healthcare Attorney Polsinelli Law Firm
Associate

Adrienne Testa is dedicated to providing effective, efficient and innovative legal solutions to health care clients. She leverages her deep understanding of health care issues to represent hospitals, physician groups and other health care professionals and organizations in a variety of health care matters. Adrienne works closely with seasoned Polsinelli attorneys to deliver clients strategic solutions tailored to their specific needs.

Adrienne graduated cum laude from Loyola University Chicago School of Law, where she received the Beazley Institute for Health Law and Policy...

312.463.6224
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