CMS Proposes Changes to EHR Incentive Program

As a result of extensive advocacy efforts by the ACC, the American Medical Association and other physician organizations, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed a number of changes to the federal Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program, also referred to as the Meaningful Use Program, for 2016 and 2017. These proposed changes, if finalized by CMS, would reduce the burden imposed on clinicians as they prepare to move to the new Merit Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS). 

The proposed changes include:

  • Reducing the 2016 reporting period to a 90-day reporting period for all eligible professionals, eligible hospitals and critical access hospitals (CAHs), instead of a full calendar year.
  • Creating a hardship exemption for eligible professionals newly demonstrating meaningful use in 2017 under the EHR Incentive Program to reduce the administrative burden on eligible professionals transitioning from the EHR program to MIPS.
  • Allowing newly attesting eligible professionals, eligible hospitals, and CAHs to report modified stage 2 requirements to meaningful use in 2017, instead of stage 3 objectives and measures. 
  • Eliminating the clinical decision support and computerized provider order entry measure reporting requirements for eligible hospitals and CAHs.

The ACC provided guidance in comment letters submitted to Congress and CMS.

Stay tuned to the ACC Advocate for updates on these proposals. 

Keywords: American Medical Association, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (U.S.), Electronic Health Records, Meaningful Use, Medicaid, Medicare

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