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EMR Certification

Purchaser Overview of Agreement for EMR Certification

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This document summarizes the concepts within the Agreement between the Province of Manitoba (Manitoba) and a vendor of an electronic medical record (EMR) product for which Manitoba Certification is requested or achieved.

General

  • Any vendor who owns and/or has exclusive control of the intellectual property rights in an EMR product that is actively supported is eligible to enter into the Agreement with Manitoba.
  • The agreement pertains to the obligations of both parties during the period in which the product is being assessed for certification and the period after the EMR product has achieved certification.
  • The agreement is considered evergreen in that it has no stated expiry date. This supports Manitoba’s efforts to establish long-term partnerships with these vendors to support the needs of the EMR purchasers and end-users, as well as those of the health care system.

EMR product assessment

  • The vendor will provide an instance (i.e. test environment) of their EMR product exclusively for use by Manitoba in assessing the product’s ability to meet Manitoba’s requirements.
  • Unless otherwise agreed by both Manitoba and the vendor, the assessment process will be complete within 180 days of Manitoba’s acceptance of an application for EMR certification.
  • Manitoba will issue a notice confirming certification of an EMR product only when the product fully complies with Manitoba’s requirements for the requested certification.
  • Once certified, vendors may begin to market their EMR product as Manitoba Certified.

Post-certification

General

  • Manitoba has the right to extend certification opportunities to additional EMR products in the future. If additional products request or achieve Manitoba Certification, this information will be posted to the Manitoba eHealth website.
  • Manitoba will maintain a list of all Certified EMR products and their certification status on its website.

Vendor-Purchaser Agreements

  • Vendor-Purchaser Agreements may not contain any restrictions that prohibit a purchaser from changing EMR products.
  • These agreements must include provisions whereby the purchaser consents to the vendor sharing information about purchases (purchaser name, clinic name, EMR implementation date, etc. - but not pricing information) and information regarding any privacy breaches by the vendor in regards to the purchaser’s data with Manitoba.

Pricing

  • Pricing controls or protections are not generally in effect for Manitoba Certified EMR products. However, if at any time there is a monopoly (only one Manitoba Certified product or only one Manitoba Certified product at the Integrated Certification level), Manitoba will invoke pricing controls. Unless otherwise agreed by Manitoba, this would limit the vendor to pricing increases based on the published Consumer Price Index.

User groups

  • Vendors are not required to establish and facilitate a user group. However, if one is established by the vendor, purchasers of the Manitoba Certified product are entitled to participate in the user group without paying a fee to the vendor.

Ongoing product improvements and assessment

  • Vendors are required to comply with all mandatory requirements issued by the province, if relevant to the certified product’s certification level. The product will be reassessed to confirm the product meets those requirements with no adverse impact to previously confirmed functionality.
  • Vendors are required to inform Manitoba, in advance, about changes to their EMR products. Manitoba has the right to reassess the effect of those changes on the product’s ability to meet Manitoba’s requirements.
  • Manitoba has the right to verify resolution of any known product deficiency (related to Manitoba’s assessment criteria), whether identified by Manitoba or a purchaser/end-user of the certified EMR product.
  • Manitoba has the right to reassess the product on an annual basis to confirm continued compliance with Manitoba’s requirements.

Consequences of non-compliance
Manitoba may be required to take steps to remedy situations which may occur in the future. Examples of these situations include but are not limited to:

  • a product deficiency that introduces a significant risk to patient safety
  • vendor refusal to implement mandatory requirements within the certified EMR product
  • failure of the certified EMR product to comply with Manitoba’s requirements

Examples of the possible consequences, commensurate with the severity of the situation, include but may not be limited to:

  • suspension of the vendor’s right to market the product as Manitoba Certified
  • suspension of a provincial service such as eHealth_hub

Data practices and risk mitigation
If the vendor is hosting the EMR on behalf of the purchaser, the vendor must:

  • ensure that the data is stored and transmitted in accordance with applicable Manitoba and federal legislation
  • provide details of it data handling practices and procedures if requested by a purchaser
  • provide copies of its risk mitigation and disaster recovery plans at time of purchase if requested by a purchaser
  • report privacy breaches to the affected purchaser

Purchaser exit services

  • If a clinician chooses to move to another practice or a practice chooses to change to another EMR product, vendors are required to provide transition services to the affected clinician. These services will access to the clinician’s data by removing all data access restrictions and/or providing him/her with a copy of all of his/her EMR data and providing descriptions of the data and the data relationships. Purchasers should be aware that Manitoba does not control the pricing associated with these transition services.

Termination
There are conditions under which an Agreement for EMR Certification could be terminated. Relevant examples include:

  • failure of the EMR product to continue to comply with requirements
  • a vendor’s refusal to implement new mandatory requirements within the Certified EMR Product
  • a significant privacy breach or series of privacy breaches by the vendor of the Certified EMR Product
  • vendor insolvency or ceasing to carry on business
  • a vendor’s choice to no longer actively support the EMR product

These would be considered a material breach of this agreement and constitute grounds for termination.

For further clarification on the Agreement for EMR Certification, contact EMR@manitoba-ehealth.ca.

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