Health care regulations Definitions

  • A

    accountable care organization (ACO)

    An accountable care organization (ACO) is an association of hospitals, providers and insurers in which all parties assume accountability for the quality of patient care, and how money is spent as it pertains to a population.

  • Affordable Care Act (ACA or Obamacare)

    The Affordable Care Act (ACA) is legislation passed in 2010 that changed how uninsured Americans enroll in and receive healthcare coverage.

  • Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)

    The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) is a U.S. government agency that functions as a part of the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) to support research to help improve the quality of health care.

  • American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA)

    The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) is a professional organization that promotes the business and clinical uses of electronic and paper-based medical information.

  • American Medical Association (AMA)

    The American Medical Association (AMA) is a physician group that works for healthcare reform and publishes a collection of medical journals.

  • American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA)

    The American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA) is a group of individuals from myriad disciplines who convene in the interest of improving health informatics as it relates to patient care, teaching, research and related aspects of health care policy.

  • B

    Blue Button

    The Blue Button initiative is a national program that allows patients to access and download personal health information into a simple text file or PDF that contains all of the personal medical data or it can be separated by data class or by date range.

  • C

    California Primary Care Association (CPCA)

    The California Primary Care Association (CPCA) is an organization that represents more than 800 nonprofit community clinics and health centers in the state. The CPCA is one of three members of Cal-REC (Regional Extension Center); the California Medical Association and the California Association of Public Hospitals are the other members.

  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

    Promoting a healthy general public and sharing data about chronic diseases are main goals of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

  • Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)

    The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is the wing of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that runs healthcare reimbursement and health IT programs.

  • common working file (CWF)

    A common working file (CWF) is a tool used by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to maintain national Medicare records for individual beneficiaries enrolled in the program.

  • computer assisted coding system (CACS)

    A computer assisted coding system (CACS) is medical software that reviews healthcare forms, including electronic health records, and assigns appropriate medical codes to its findings.

  • Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) code

    Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes are a uniform medical code set maintained and copyrighted by the American Medical Association and used to describe medical, surgical and diagnostic services.

  • E

    electronic protected health information (ePHI)

    Electronic protected health information (ePHI) refers to any protected health information (PHI) that is covered under Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) security regulations and is produced, saved, transferred or received in an electronic form.

  • Epic Systems Corp.

    Epic Systems Corp. is the market leader in electronic health records (EHR) technology and also sells population health management software. The privately held company is among the most criticized health IT vendors, yet its success is clear with more than 190 million users.

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