Welcome to the EHR and Meaningful Use Support Center

The EHR Support Center is here to assist clinics, providers, and informaticists in understanding and navigating, and improving their use of electronic health record technology.  

The Medicare and Medicaid EHR incentive Programs (formerly known as “Meaningful Use” programs, now called Promoting Interoperability) began in 2011 and have progressed and changed over the years. 

To date, Tribal, Federal, and Urban clinics within the Portland Area have earned approximately $3.7 million in incentive payments through the EHR incentive Programs.
The EHR Support Center seeks to provide support for those participating in any of these programs, as well as in the day to day use of electronic health records to better serve our patients and work towards reducing health disparities.

We are tracking the IHS HIT Modernization efforts as well as state HIT programs to better understand how Tribal health systems are impacted and to look for every opportunity for Tribal voices to be heard in the process.

We can provide one-on-one support, with particular expertise in RPMS EHR. Troubleshooting, optimizing software, and providing customized training for both Clinical Application Coordinators (CACs) and end users are a few of the support activities we can offer.

Contact Katie Johnson at or (503) 416-3272 for more information.

  • History
  • Contact Us


On February 17, 2009, the President signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA).  Title XIII of Division A and Title IV of Division B of ARRA, together cited as the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH Act), include provisions to promote meaningful use of health information technology to improve the quality and value of American health care.  The HITECH Act also established the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as the principal federal entity responsible for coordinating the effort to implement a nationwide health information technology (health IT) infrastructure that allows for the use and exchange of electronic health information in electronic format.

The HITECH Act (Title IV in Division B of ARRA) authorizes incentive payments for eligible Medicare and Medicaid providers’ meaningful use of certified electronic health record (EHR) technology.  By 2015, providers were expected to have adopted and be actively utilizing an EHR in compliance with the “meaningful use” definition or they are subject to financial penalties under Medicare (per Sections 4101(b) and 4102(b) of ARRA).  The detailed criteria to qualify for meaningful use incentive payments will be established by the Secretary of HHS (hereafter referred to as the Secretary) through the formal notice-and-comment rulemaking process.  For access to the most current publicly available information about meaningful use, please visit the Meaningful Use section of the ONC programmatic website at:

Through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), ONC established 62 Regional Extension Centers (RECs) that assisted primary care providers in the adoption and meaningful use of electronic health records.  In 2011, the NPAIHB EHR and MU Support Center was established when the Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board partnered with the National Indian Health Board to become a Regional Extension Center (REC) for the Portland Area.  The REC was established to help providers demonstrate Meaningful Use of a certified electronic health record.  The goal was to improve health outcomes and reduce health disparities in our population through the use of an electronic health record. The REC program proved successful.  As REC, we were able to assist over 160 providers in Portland Area with navigating the MU program registration process, upgrading to a certified EHR, achieving the meaningful use requirements, providing assistance with security risk assessments, and deployment of RPMS electronic prescribing of medications. The REC grant is complete, but the NPAIBH EHR and MU Support Center is in full operation.

Project Contacts

Katie Johnson, Pharm D
Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board
Project Director, NPAIHB Regional Extension Center
503-416-3272 (phone)
503-228-8182 (fax)

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