Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-N.C.) is continuing to urge for a shorter reporting period for eligible professionals and eligible hospitals to attest to Meaningful Use--and now has the backing of 28 of her colleagues.
The words "concerned," "appalled" and "disappointed" sum up the reaction from many in the industry to yesterday's news from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services that about 257,000 Medicare eligible professionals will be hit with penalties for failing to meet Meaningful Use requirements.
Roughly 257,000 Medicare eligible professionals (EPs) will be hit with a 1 percent penalty to their Medicare Physician Fee Schedule payments beginning Jan. 5, 2015, for failing to meet Meaningful Use by Oct. 1, 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services revealed during a press call on Dec. 17. Of those 257,000 EPs, 28,000 will receive a 2 percent penalty for failing to meet an e-prescribing threshold.
The Office of the National Coordinator's Health IT Policy Committee endorsed the recommendations of its Interoperability and Health Information Exchange Workgroup regarding the agency's proposed interoperability roadmap.
Congress has made clear that the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT's priority should be on interoperability, ordering the agency to change how it certifies electronic health records so that non-interoperable products don't make the cut.
The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has approved the certification process for the electronic prescribing of controlled substances developed by the Electronic Healthcare Network Accreditation Commission (EHNAC), according to an announcement posted Dec. 12, in the Federal Register.
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT's updated health IT strategic plan, released Dec. 8, is a high-level, ambitious framework for the federal government. It addresses some of the questions the industry has had about the direction of health IT and ONC. It's also an interesting read.
The attestation numbers for Stage 2 of Meaningful Use program continue to disappoint, with only 3,655 eligible professionals and 164 eligible hospitals and critical access hospitals receiving payments for meeting the requirements through October 2014, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' latest data.
Meaningful Use incentive payments have been the top driver of physicians' transitions to electronic health records over the past five years, according to a new data brief from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT.
Meaningful Use is supposed be, well, meaningful. Stakeholders have been all over the board regarding what the Meaningful Use program should evolve into. Some believe the focus should be on interoperability. Others want to make it less punitive and restrictive. The Institute of Medicine has suggested that more social and behavior data, such as stress and household income levels, be collected. But if the new list of potential measures for the Meaningful Use program published by the National Quality Forum's Measure Application Partnership (MAP) is any indication, for eligible professionals, the program is either getting customized or going haywire.