EHR Certification – The Race for First

I have a lot more to say about EHR certification and the battle we’re about to see between Drummond Group and CCHIT for EMR vendors, but I’m about to leave for an interesting conference on meaningful use, EMR and HIE. Although, I did want to just start the conversation on becoming a certified EHR.

It seems like the battle is just beginning to try and secure EHR vendors under a certain certification. One of the competitive differences right now is about speed. Which EHR certification body will be the first to certify an EHR under the ARRA guidelines. It will be a big PR move for the first EHR vendor and should benefit Drummond Group or CCHIT to be first.

From the dates that I’ve heard, Drummond Group seems like they’ll be accepting applications for certification first (near the end of this month). CCHIT will be doing it at the beginning of October. It will be interesting to see how quickly Drummond Group will be able to turn around the EHR certification results.

Plus, one other wrinkle in this area is that CCHIT is giving priority to the EHR vendors that are already CCHIT Certified or Preliminary ARRA certified. This means the other 250+ EHR vendors are being treated as second class citizens. You can guess where that larger part of the EHR market is going for their certification: Drummond Group.

About the author

John Lynn

John Lynn

John Lynn is the Founder of the, a network of leading Healthcare IT resources. The flagship blog, Healthcare IT Today, contains over 13,000 articles with over half of the articles written by John. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 20 million times.

John manages Healthcare IT Central, the leading career Health IT job board. He also organizes the first of its kind conference and community focused on healthcare marketing, Healthcare and IT Marketing Conference, and a healthcare IT conference,, focused on practical healthcare IT innovation. John is an advisor to multiple healthcare IT companies. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can be found on Twitter: @techguy.


  • John… Fact that CCHIT will prioritize their certification toward those applications from existing CCHIT clients is simply good business.

    CCHIT isn’t treating those companies who didn’t seek CCHIT certification before now as “second class citizens”. They are treating their returning customers as first class citizens. That’s part of what the vendors get for their money. Right?

    Since the existing clients are already CCHIT certified they are familiar with the process and their testing philosophy so that process should move more swiftly. Am sure Drummond will attract many who don’t have a CCHIT credential already … which could slow down that pipeline.

    Were I a vendor … and the process allowed it … I would submit packages to both CCHIT and Drummond simultaneously. If I am confident in my package … I pull back the second package as soon as one of the certifiers begins processing its test package. Or … I just let them both go through the process as a backup for a potential issue whereby one certifier fails the package … and the other passes it. Worst case … both pass … and both credentials go on the box.

  • DonB – if it weren’t so expensive to apply, I think we’d see more vendors using this strategy.

    In addition to price and timeliness, I was wondering about “brand name” – CCHIT does carry a bit of buyer assurance with it as of today, as they’ve been the ‘go-to’ certification group out there for the EHR marketplace.

    I suspect this will change rapidly as CIO’s as well as vendors realize that certification is certification in terms of Meaningful Use eligibility. Whatever can get you there cheaply and quickly is probably the better investment.


  • I know some EHR vendors that are considering doing Drummond just because it’s faster than CCHIT. No doubt Drummond will have to battle for branding like CCHIT. They’ve done a better job marketing CCHIT than creating a certification;-)

    More on all of this tomorrow including those EHR vendors that were previously CCHIT certified.

  • Hi, Timing is important here and as compare to CCHIT, Drummond gives more comfort and ease to answer very important question “Is product ready to get through the certification test?” their support for test preparation allows you to feel assured about passing the certification test in quick time.

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