Electronic Medical Records Stimulus
Is purchasing an EMR by 2011 on your to-do list?
Congratulations! You are on the right track! Practices ready to implement a paperless EHR system can trust that our certified partners are ready to provide a smooth transition of your patient data. Also, our certified partners will help you on your way to meeting meaningful use and receiving your piece of the electronic medical records stimulus money.
We understand. Many practices are in the same boat. There are many documented reasons why physicians are wary of installing an EHR. Cost was named as the major concern for not going with an EHR, followed closely by staff training time. Also, assurance of actually receiving the federal meaningful use stimulus funding. And lastly, having the time and resources available to devote to transitioning from a 100% paper-based system to a 100% electronic workflow and environment. If this is your practice, and you want to get the 2011 and incentive payments, but are not ready to dive head first into an EMR/EHR, then RcopiaMU is the option for you.
RcopiaMU* is a low-cost, user-friendly, guaranteed solution for meeting all 15 Meaningful Use requirements and 5 Menu items, which qualifies physicians to receive the biggest available chunk of the stimulus in the first two years.
You may want to reconsider. A recent survey showed that many physicians are unaware of the financial penalties they will face if they do not demonstrate "meaningful use" of EHRs by January 2015. Out of 500 physicians, 35% were unaware that demonstrating EHR meaningful use is one aspect of the legislation and would result in fines for their practice! The first two years have the lowest minimum requirements and provide the greatest incentives! Now is the time to consider taking some initial steps to bringing technology into your practices! Something to think about before you completely cross off meeting meaningful use requirements from your to-do list!
The HITECH Act of 2009
On February 17, 2009, President Barack Obama signed the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act as part of the stimulus package referred to as the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. With provisions to promote meaningful use of health IT in an effort to improve the quality of American health care, this electronic medical records stimulus legislation designates $19.2 billion to fund the adoption of health IT.
To be eligible for the funding provided by the legislation, eligible providers must demonstrate "meaningful use" of a certified system. "Meaningful users" are those who meet the following criteria:
- Use of a certified EHR or modular system
- Submit most prescriptions electronically
- Report clinical quality measures to HHS
- Have an EHR that interconnects electronically for information exchange
- Report billing codes indicating that patient encounters were recorded using an EHR
Beginning in 2011, eligible physicians will receive incentive payments of up to $44,000 from Medicare and $63,750 from Medicaid. In addition to providing incentives for health IT adoption, the legislation also established disincentives for medical practices that fail to comply with the timeline of the act. If eligible professionals are not compliant by 2015, their Medicare reimbursements will be reduced as follows:
- 2015: 1% Reduction
- 2016: 2% Reduction
- 2017: 3% Reduction
- Subsequent Years: 3% Reduction
The legislation also introduces new security provisions and provides $2 billion to support health IT infrastructure, loans, research, training, and education.
*DrFirst's RcopiaMU is the combination of a DrFirst Rcopia ONC-ATCB 2011/2012 Certified Modular EHR, certification number CC-1112-401680-2, which meets the following certification criteria: 170.302(a-e, j, o-v) and 170.304(a-b), and the WellCentive Patient Registry 2.0, certification number CC-1112-946650-3, which meets the following certification criteria: 170.302(c-i, k-v) and 170.304(c-j). The additional software relied upon for testing included OpenATNA, First DataBank Drug Database, and Surescripts. This certification does not represent an endorsement by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or guarantee the receipt of incentive payments.
Health Alliance Plan