About Certification Commission for Healthcare IT (CCHIT)

Certification Commission for Healthcare
Information Technology (CCHIT)

Since 2004, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONCHIT) and the American Health Information Community (AHIC) were established by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) with the goal of improving healthcare through information technology.

One of the key actions indicated by ONCHIT to move the nation toward the President’s goal was the private sector certification of health information technology products.

President’s Goal: In April 2004, and every year since, President George W. Bush has called for widespread use of health information technology (HIT), and for electronic health records (EHRs) to be in use for most Americans by 2014.

GoalsTo that end, the Certification Commission for Healthcare Information Technology (CCHITSM) was created.

Three leading HIT industry associations – the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) and The National Alliance for Health Information Technology (Alliance) – joined forces in July 2004 to launch CCHIT as a voluntary, private-sector organization to certify HIT products. The three committed resources to support CCHIT during its organizational phase.

In September 2005, HHS awarded CCHIT a three-year contract to develop and evaluate certification criteria and create an inspection process for HIT in three areas:

  • Ambulatory EHRs for the office-based physician or provider
  • Inpatient EHRs for hospitals and health systems
  • The Network components through which they interoperate and share information


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