UPDATE: This post was actually off base a bit. I posted a meaningful use stage one correction post that clarifies it.
In case you might have missed this detail, meaningful use stage 1 is going to be applied in 2011 and 2012 with meaningful use stage 2 not taking effect until 2013. What does this mean and how does this affect someone who’s looking to adopt an EHR?
I and others have talked about the idea that there’s no need to rush into an EHR since the EHR stimulus if you implement in 2011 or 2012 is the same amount ($44k – for Medicare). This is good thinking and I still don’t think you should rush an EHR implementation based on stimulus money.
However, you should consider as part of your calculation that if you wait to show meaningful use of your EHR until 2012, then you will only be showing meaningful use stage 1 (which is likely to be MUCH easier than stage 2) for 1 year. Whereas if you show meaningful use of an EHR in 2011, then you’ll have 2 years worth of meaningful use at the easier stage 1 level before having to show meaningful use stage 2. Does that make sense?
Just one more little factor that can reasonably influence when providers will decide to implement an EHR. Notice that I said, when and not if.