TAMPA, FL--(Marketwired - July 30, 2014) - Meaningful use holds a catch for specialists; some requirements are inapplicable to certain specialties, yet there are no "blanket" exclusions for which any affected practices can qualify. CMS publishes a specialist tipsheet that helps in identifying which exclusions may apply, but specialist practices are completely responsible for evaluating "whether they meet the exclusion criteria for each applicable objective."
As specialists who participated in meaningful use Stage 1 prepare to advance to Stage 2, there are two important factors to consider regarding the choice of an electronic medical record (EMR) technology partner:
The ONC-ACB certified EMR
To qualify for meaningful use Stage 2 incentives, practices must adopt EMRs that are compliant with the ONC 2014 Edition criteria and certified as Complete EHRs by the Certification Commission for Health Information Technology (CCHIT), an Authorized Certification Body (ONC-ACB), in accordance with the applicable eligible professional certification criteria adopted by the Secretary of Health and Human Services.
EMR vendors whose solutions are properly certified are positioned to support eligible professionals in attesting to meaningful use Stage 2. Any practice operating with an EMR that is not properly certified will simply be ineligible for incentive payments.
The EMR designed for the specialty practice
It's important to remember that CMS's ultimate goal in creating the meaningful use program was to promote technology to improve care delivery, coordination and outcomes. Yet just as meaningful use can't function as a "one size fits all" approach, and therefore specialists need exemptions, so it is that no single EMR can advance care equally well for all practices of all types.
This means that in addition to supporting your efforts at meaningful use attestation, your EMR should support your practice as an especially good fit for your specialty. That will require functionality designed to provide the right information at the right time, personalized to specialty-specific workflow. Added bonus: the vendor who creates an EMR specific to your specialty will also be best equipped to help navigate any gray areas of meaningful use exclusion criteria.
As a trusted advisor to our clients, Nextech has helped specialty practices earn more than $14 million in incentive payments. Learn more about how Nextech can assist during the attestation process.