Congressman Tom Price, M.D. (R-GA) issued the following statement after introducing, along with Congressman Ron Kind (D-WI), H.R. 4066 -- the Health Information Technology Reform Act. Current regulatory standards largely reflect physician office-based practices and are not applicable to the practice of pathology and laboratory medicine. This legislation exempts pathologists from unrealistic federal requirements that compromise quality care and will keep them from being penalized by mandated standards for electronic health records dictated by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
"A Washington-knows-best, one-size-fits-all approach is the wrong prescription for addressing the challenges in our health care system," said Congressman Price. "The meaningful use standards used to measure implementation of electronic health records fail to recognize the various goals and structures within our nation's complex health care system. This is particularly evident for America's pathologists -- a group that already contributes to the use of electronic health information. This legislation will prevent pathologists from being penalized for what they are not able to realistically do as they practice their profession. Meaningful use standards currently in law are clearly not applicable to the nature of their practice. Physicians and other medical practitioners should not be penalized when the law is inflexible or inapplicable. Washington must recognize the real world impact of many of these regulations and the real life danger of a one-size-fits-all approach. In this case, what is threatened is the ability of doctors to do their job effectively and efficiently. A positive step in the right direction is this Health Information Technology Reform Act."