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Stimulus Package Breakdown

by John Moore | February 12, 2009

If a picture is worth a thousands words, this Washington Post graphic is worth nearly $800B.  Provides a fantastic breakdown of exactly what the Stimulus package is and where all the money is headed.

Impressive job Washington Post.  Hat’s off to you.

7 responses to “Stimulus Package Breakdown”

  1. Brian says:


    The Congressional Budget Office projects Health IT funds won’t start flowing until 2010 and they will peak in 2014. I had thought the stimulus would provide a faster shot in the arm – do you think their projection is accurate?

  2. John says:

    Hi Brian,
    I’m now trying to get the details on what exactly has been hammered out in the HITECH Act. The way i is currently worded, head of ONC will have $2B in discretionary fiunding to kick-start programs (the other $17B is the CMS EHR reimibursement plan)

    As for when the $$$ will flow, depends on what aspects we are talking about.

    For HIE/RHIO, of which there is $300M, expect that to flow pretty quickly as there is already a model in place, even if it is problematic.

    We may also see $$$ flow into the Extension program quickly to begin the task of IT training to insure we have enough skilled people to implement EHRs. This is a jobs program, legislators will want to see a quick win here and there are plenty down in DC right now (many from lg IDNs and NGOs) trying to get their hands on that $$$.

    Reimbursement to hospitals and physicians for adopting a “certified EHR” is going to take sometime to work out as there is not a clear definition of what certified actually means, though legislation provides guidance/intent, its execution is another matter. Also, with HHS having to work with NIST on this issue, you can bet it will take some time there as well to iron out who is responsible for what. This may be what CBO was referring to, the $17B from CMS.

    Definitely a work in progress.

  3. Calvin Jablonski says:

    Why not pack CCHIT EHR certifications in Cracker Jack Boxes? If folks think CCHIT is a real organization and the certification is anything more then a stamp of approval from the HIMSS Circus they need to think again after looking at the facts.

    Some facts are known about the Certification Commission for Health Information Technology.

    The Certification Commission for Health Information Technology (CCHIT) is a defunct Illinois Not-For-Profit 501(c) 3, which operates to take money from the Office of the National Coordinator and Vendors by offering to sell a “Certification”.

    DID I say DEFUNCT? Yes I said DEFUNCT…please read on.

    The Not-For-Profit 501(c) 3, Certification Commission for Health Information Technology (CCHIT), operates a “Front” office located at 200 S. Wacker Drive, Chicago, Illinois.

    CCHIT, as it is known, represents itself as a government recognized organization for certifying electronic health records. CCHIT has received monies from the United States Government (estimated over $2.5 million to date) and monies from vendors of electronic health records.

    CCHIT was formed as a NFP in the State of Illinois and is an entity spawned by none other , HIMSS.org. CCHIT is no longer a legal entity existing within the State of Illinois effective April 11, 2008, but continues to engage business as a 501(c) 3 accepting payments as reported by J. Morrisey, Director of CCHIT Communications (February 3, 2009).

    CCHIT continues to hold itself out to take money for the sale of “Certification” (a rubber stamp device the buyer can display on his product if the fee is paid), a contrived performance standards product label developed by its parent organization, Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS), a lobbyist, with headquarters at 230 E. Ohio St., Chicago, Illinois. CCHIT was also located within the HIMSS Headquarters at 230 E. Ohio Street in Chicago but moved to Wacker Drive apparently due to appearances of being too close to the lobbyist parent organization.

    CCHIT, through the organization that spawned them—HIMSS.org, a lobbyist organization—recently asked for $25 Billion additional funds in an open letter to the Obama administration (http://www.himss.org/advocacy/). HIMSS, through its agent H. Stephen Lieber, provided CCHT with $300,000 seed money in 2006 with which to fund a startup operation. HIMSS receives money from CCHIT as a subcontractor, as the payoff for seeding the startup. HIMSS provides public commentary through the use of its own members for certification criteria back to CCHIT. HIMSS is also the parent company for the Electronics Health Record Vendor Association (EHRVA), another Not-For-Profit housed at 230 E. Ohio St., Chicago, Illinois.

    The Facts:

    1. The Chairman of CCHIT is Mark Leavitt, MD, PhD. Mark Leavitt is also Chief Medical Officer with HIMSS.org. It is believed Mark Leavitt may be a relative of Mike Leavitt, former HHS Secretary.

    2. CCHIT takes federal money, and money from vendors, in exchange for the sale of “certification”. CCHIT does not have a legitimate physical address where it conducts its testing. CCHIT has a “front” office at 200 S. Wacker Drive, Chicago, Illinois, with previous headquarters at 230 E. Ohio St., Chicago, Illinois. CCHIT is, in fact, now defunct.

    3. CCHIT has no legitimate registration certificate of good standing with the State of Illinois, the state in which it is purportedly chartered as a 501(c) 3. It is, in fact, listed as “involuntarily dissolved” effective April 11, 2008, file# 65254336.Illinois State listing here: http://www.ilsos.gov/corporatellc/

    4. CCHIT does not provide independent inspections of its facility or 3rd party reviews of its findings. “Certification” status of vendor products granted by CCHIT after the Illinois State’s involuntary dissolution date of April 11, 2008 appears to be without merit or bogus, and CCHIT operates deceptively to convey legitimacy.

    5. CCHIT operates fraudulently within the State of Illinois and in the United States to take money from vendors of electronic health record systems and from taxpayers; the CCHIT business practice presents as a Pay-For-Play scheme; if the vendor pays, CCHIT certifies the product conveying a competitive advantage in the marketplace. There is no transparent certification testing for 3rd party review. The costs to certify are in the many tens of thousands per vendor. Officers and Directors of CCHIT have taken money in exchange for “Certification“, knowing its 501(c) 3 operational status to be defunct.

    6. CCHIT, a dissolved entity and defunct 501(c) 3 Not-For-Profit, receives funding from the Office of the National Coordinator (ONCHIT) and is tied to a lobbyist organization that claims to be a Not-For-Profit, HIMSS.org—the organization that spawned CCHIT and which formerly housed the entity in its corporate headquarters located at 230 E. Ohio St., Chicago, Illinois.

    Why does CCHIT continue to certify vendor products when its own corporation has been involuntarily dissolved? Does the word “MONEY” ring a bell?

    CCHIT continues to hold itself out as certifying entity when it can’t even certify to the state of its incorporation that it does in fact exist.

    Closing thoughts:

    The certification process and testing should be reviewed carefully, and those vendor companies whose products were certified after CCHIT’s involuntary dissolution should be contacted. Money should be returned to the vendors and the taxpayers- CCHIT is a bogus operation.

    CCHIT should NOT be allowed to receive future Federal grants and monies from the United States Government as part of the stimulus package. CCHIT is defunct , moreover the cozy relationships between CCHIT, ONC, CMS, HITSP and others are bankrolled with taxpayer money and money from HIMSS.org and its others.

    Through all the smoke and mirrors we the people are supposed to trust these Bozo’s and they actually think we are buying it?

    There is no point in CCHIT holding itself out a legitimate entity at HIMSS Annual Conference either, CCHIT is a defunct organization and has been since the beginning of 2008…DUH!

    CCHIT has flown under the radar for a year and a half, the jig is up and the whistle has been blown.


  4. Francis LoGiudice says:

    CJ thank you for the information about CCHIT and HIMMSS, so then where do I go to find trustworthy information on EHR standards?


    • John says:

      While I am not hear to confirm or deny any of CJ’s remarks on this website, though tempted to do a post today, I would caution you to do your own research on information regarding EHR standards. Plenty has been written on the topic and my strong opinion is that even if an EMR complies to given standards, that does not necessarily mean that the software will support interop – that depends largely on how it is deployed and used. Core standards to pay attention to when reviewing various EMR solutions in the market today are HL7, CCD & CCR for messaging of clinical notes, ICD-9 & SNOMED for coding standards, DICOM for imaging, LOINC for lab data.

  5. […] Stimulus Package Breakdown If a picture is worth a thousands words, this Washington Post graphic is worth nearly $800B.  Provides a fantastic […] […]

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