At the recent HIMSS annual conference, many statistics were released touting the early success of the EHR incentives/meaningful use program:
- 21,000 providers have registered, with many more having indicated their intention to do so.
- 62 Regional Extension Centers have enrolled 47,000 primary care physicians.
- 6 certification bodies (ATCBs) have certified 415 EHRs and modules.
- $20 million in incentives has already been paid to 25 providers (including hospitals) in 4 states.
Does this mean that anyone has successfully demonstrated meaningful use? Not yet. The incentives were awarded by the first Medicaid programs for the “adoption, implementation, or upgrade” (A/I/U) of certified EHR technology—a Medicaid-only provision for first-year incentives. The first demonstrations of meaningful use will not be attested to until April, when the early Medicare participants will complete their 90-day reporting period.
Lynn Scheps is Vice President, Government Affairs at EMR vendor SRSsoft. In this role, Lynn has been a Voice of Physicians and SRSsoft users in Washington during the formulation of the meaningful use criteria. Lynn is currently working to assist SRSsoft users interested in showing meaningful use and receiving the EHR incentive money.