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APRIL 2014
In This Issue of REConnection:


It looks like spring is finally here to stay! All of us at RI REC hope your season
is off to a healthy start. We have lots of great information to share with you in
this edition of REConnection. Here are some of the highlights: 
As always, we welcome your feedback and story ideas. Just email us at REConnection Feedback.

Best Regards,
The RI REC Team
stepsSteps to Meaningful Use Spring Event - June 4th

Who Should Attend? Any Practice Working Toward Stage 1 Meaningful Use 

The RI Regional Extension Center is hosting an after-hours open house for providers who have not yet met Stage 1 Meaningful Use. The RI REC team, who are experts in helping practices overcome the barriers of Meaningful Use, will be on hand to meet with practice providers and staff to answer questions and address concerns.

If you have not yet met Stage 1 Meaningful Use, and can answer 'yes' to any of the questions below, please attend this free event!

  • Are you still trying to decide on an EHR?
  • Are you confused about how to make Meaningful Use happen?
  • Are you trying to complete a Security Risk Assessment and don't know where to start?
  • Do you need help registering with CMS?
  • Are you having issues with how to roll out your patient portal?
  • Are you having trouble accessing or running your reports?    
    Wednesday, June 4, 2014 
    6:00 PM to 8:30 PM 
    Rhode Island Quality Institute
    50 Holden Street - Suite 300   
    Providence, RI 02908  


HTHealth IT Impact on Quality: Stories from the Field  


The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) recently released a new report, Health IT Impact on Quality: Stories from the Field. Featuring real life stories, it illustrates how Regional Extension Centers (RECs) all over the country are supporting providers as they use electronic health records (EHRs) to improve quality, efficiency and safety.  These stories capture the significant progress made to date, and offer a glimpse of what is possible to harness the full potential of health IT and create a healthier America.


Of the 1,202 Rhode Island primary care providers who enrolled in the RI REC to receive assistance with achieving Meaningful Use, 838 (70%) have successfully attested and received federal incentive payments when eligible.  Another 86 specialist providers are enrolled and working toward the same goal. 


At this pivotal time in the health IT evolution, we want to thank you for your support and express our hopes for continued collaboration in developing our nation's health IT infrastructure.  


expirationExpiration of Microsoft Windows XP Security Updates
What You Need to Know

April 8, 2014 Microsoft ended its automatic security updates and security patches for Windows XP and Office 2003. This means that Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 covered entities and business associates that continue to use the software may be at risk and, in the event of a data breach, hard-pressed to argue that "reasonable and appropriate" measures were taken to protect patients' information. Nixon Peabody, LLC has outlined steps you can take to evaluate your risk and navigate the challenge.
Full article on here
heartbleedHeartbleed - Internet Security Flaw


An Internet security flaw called "Heartbleed" has been featured in the news recently. Heartbleed is a software security flaw in one of the most common security protocols used on the Internet. The flaw, which makes sensitive information vulnerable to exposure or theft, put many websites at risk around the world including major businesses and social media websites. Passwords, emails, instant messages, and credit card numbers could be exploited.

The link below is a website where you can test the vulnerability of your own practice website. Simply enter your website name into the address field, click submit, and the result will tell you whether or not your website is vulnerable. If not, there is nothing further that you need to do. If your practice website is found to be vulnerable, you should reach out to your IT department/provider for assistance.


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icdICD-10 - What to Do Now


On March 31, 2014, the Senate passed a bill that delayed ICD-10 enforcement to October 1, 2015. The deadline was originally slated for Oct. 1, 2014. The one year delay was met with mixed reactions. recently published an article titled 3 Ways Providers Can Take Advantage of the ICD-10 Delay. Click here to read the complete article. 


The RI Regional Extension Center will host an ICD-10 webinar on Tuesday, May 6, presented by Nancy Enos - a well-known local expert on ICD-10 implementation. Click here for more details and to register. 

tipsMeaningful Use Tip: 
New Tool Available to Help With Your Security Risk Assessment

As part of your Meaningful Use attestation, and to be in compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Security Rule, you are required to complete a security risk assessment (SRA) each year.  The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently released a new Security Risk Assessment tool designed to help guide providers in small and medium sized offices. This tool allows the practice to walk through a series of steps and questions that help reveal areas where your organization's protected health information (PHI) could be at risk. 
Click here to read more and to access this free resource.

healthit Health IT Professional Certification


The RI Regional Extension Center offers free licenses to take online Health IT professional certification courses. Upon successful completion of a course, you can add the appropriate credential after your name. This offer is available to Rhode Island primary care providers and specialists, their office staff, and any Rhode Island-based college student enrolled in a health IT-related course of study.  


Click here for more information about this program or contact the RI REC at 888-858-4815. Participation is available on a first-come, first-served basis and is available only this year.


dontmissDon't Miss these Upcoming Events!

REConnection Live!

Fri, May 2, 2014 12:15 PM - 1:00 PM EDT

Click Here to Register


This webinar is the live version of our newsletter where we will bring you up-to-date information about topics of interest to the provider community concerning healthcare technology and beyond. We'll discuss what's happening both nationally and locally with the Meaningful Use initiative and discuss important issues of software security. Hear a brief, live discussion about these topics and more! As always, we will open the floor for questions of current topics after the session.



ICD-10 Transition, Next Steps to ICD-10

Tue, May 6, 2014 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM EDT

Click Here to Register


Please join RIQI for a lunchtime webinar with national expert and certified professional coder, Nancy Enos (FACMPE, CPMA, CPC-1), for an engaging and informative presentation about ICD-10 and what your practice can do to prepare for the change.


Nancy will provide overview, comparisons, best practices, major concerns and touch on many other points of the project. After the presentation, there will be time for questions and answers.




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Information & Resources
If you missed the RI REC presentation about Clinical Quality Measures, click the link below to view the recorded session/slides with link to resources.



Link to slides (PDF format)


Rhode Island Medical Journal:  April 2014 Edition  

RIQI is pleased to share the April 2014 edition of the Rhode Island Medical Journal, the monthly publication of the Rhode Island Medical Society. It offers peer-reviewed articles by local authors on a broad variety of mostly clinical topics.  Each month, the Journal features commentaries by Dr. Stan Aronson and Dr. Joseph Friedman, full-color photographs and illustrations, human interest items, historical notes and articles, news of the Warren Alpert Medical School, obituaries and much more. It is a uniquely interdisciplinary publication for and by the Rhode Island healthcare community.   

Read the April Edition


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Contact Us

REConnection is intended to provide the Rhode Island healthcare community and other interested stakeholders with timely news and information about RI REC's programs, resources, and educational activities that support the adoption of health information technology.

To learn more about participating in RI REC's EHR Adoption, HIE/CurrentCare, and Direct Adoption Programs, please call  888-924-4156 or write to

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The RI Regional Extension Center (RI REC) is a service of the Rhode Island Quality Institute, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to improving the quality, safety, and value of health care in Rhode Island. To learn more, visit


RI REC and its services and materials are made possible through a grant from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology with US Department of Health and Human Services support.