• Article

Enhancing health IT functionality for children


Wald, J., Haque, S., Rizk, S., Webb, J., Ebron, S., Lehmann, C., ... Brown, S. L. (2018). Enhancing health IT functionality for children: The 2015 children's EHR format. Pediatrics, 141(4), [e20163894].


Electronic health record (EHR) use throughout the United States has
advanced considerably, but functionality to support the optimal care of
children has been slower to develop and deploy. A previous team of experts
systematically identified gaps in EHR functionality during collaborative
work from 2010 to 2013 that produced the Children’s EHR Format (Format),
funded under the Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization
Act of 2009, Public Law 111-3. After that, a team of practitioners, software
developers, health policy leaders, and other stakeholders examined the
Format’s exhaustive list of 547 EHR functional requirements in 26 topic
areas and found them to be valuable but in need of further refinement
and prioritization. Work began in 2014 to develop a shortened high
priority list of requirements and provide guidance to improve their use.
Through a modified Delphi process that included key document review,
selection criteria, multiple rounds of voting, and small group discussion, a
multistakeholder work group identified and refined 47 items on the basis of
earlier requirements to form the 2015 Children’s EHR Format Priority List
and developed 16 recommended uses of the Format. The full report of the
Format enhancement activities is publicly available. In this article, we aim to
promote awareness of these high priority EHR functional requirements for
the care of children, sharpen industry focus on adopting these changes, and
align all stakeholders in prioritizing specific health information technology
functionalities including those essential for well-child preventive care,
medication management, immunization tracking, and growth data for
specific pediatric subgroups.