The Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs provide a financial incentive for the "meaningful use" of certified EHR technology to achieve health and efficiency goals. By putting into action and meaningfully using an EHR system, providers will reap benefits beyond financial incentives such as reduction in errors, availability of records and data, reminders and alerts, clinical decision support, and e-prescribing/refill automation.
What is "Meaningful Use"?
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 specifies three main components of Meaningful Use:
- The use of a certified EHR in a meaningful manner, such as e-prescribing.
- The use of certified EHR technology for electronic exchange of health information to improve quality of health care.
- The use of certified EHR technology to submit clinical quality and other measures.
Simply put, "meaningful use" means providers need to show they're using certified EHR technology in ways that can be measured significantly in quality and in quantity.
How do I Meet Meaningful Use Requirements?
To qualify for incentive payments, meaningful use requirements must be met in the following ways:
- Medicare EHR Incentive Program: Eligible professionals, eligible hospitals, and critical access hospitals (CAHs) must successfully demonstrate meaningful use of certified electronic health record technology every year they participate in the program.
- Medicaid EHR Incentive Program: Eligible professionals and eligible hospitals may qualify for incentive payments if they adopt, implement, upgrade or demonstrate meaningful use in their first year of participation. They must successfully demonstrate meaningful use for subsequent participation years.
- Adopted: Acquired and installed certified EHR technology. (For example, can show evidence of installation.)
- Implemented: Began using certified EHR technology. (For example, provide staff training or data entry of patient demographic information into EHR.)
- Upgraded: Expanded existing technology to meet certification requirements. (For example, upgrade to certified EHR technology or add new functionality to meet the definition of certified EHR technology.)
Watch this video...
Please view the short video above for step-by-step instructions on the Registration and Attestation process (video provided by CMS).
Attestation for the Medicare EHR Incentive Program opens on April 18, 2011. A preview of the attestation system is now available.
Registration for the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs is now open.
Practitioners are encouraged to register for the Medicare and/or Medicaid EHR Incentive Program(s) as soon as possible. You can register before you have a certified EHR. Register even if you do not have an enrollment record in PECOS.
By clicking the following link, you can begin the registration process on the CMS website: