MMS News & Events

CMS RELEASES MEANINGFUL USE STAGE II REQUIREMENTS; EFFECTIVE 1/1/14

August 28th, 2012

CMS RELEASES MEANINGFUL USE STAGE II REQUIREMENTS; EFFECTIVE 1/1/14

The final rule adds two new “core objectives” to the Stage 2 reporting requirements for physicians and hospitals.

  1. The first requirement, for physicians, is to use secure electronic messaging to communicate relevant health information with patients.
  2. The second requirement, for hospitals, is to automatically track medications from order to administration using “assistive technologies in conjunction with an electronic medication administration record (eMAR).

The final rule adds new “menu objectives” to the Stage 2 reporting requirements for physicians and hospitals.

  1. The final rule adds “outpatient lab reporting” to the program’s menu objectives for hospitals and “recording clinical notes” as a menu objective for both physicians and hospitals
  2. The rule lowered the requirement that providers submit summaries of care from 65% of “transitions of care and referrals” to just 50%
  3. Additionally, it eliminated the organizational and vendor limitations in the requirement that providers electronically transmit a summary of care for more than 10% of transitions of care and referrals to another provider with no organizational or vendor affiliations.
  4. Also, the final rule modifies the definition of “hospital-based” physicians to create an application process for physicians to demonstrate that they alone fund their EHR systems and are eligible to receive the incentive payments,

Since the Meaningful Use program began in January 2011, more than 120,000 eligible healthcare professionals and more than 3,300 hospitals have qualified to participate and receive incentive payments, according to the CMS. The rates of participation include more than half of all eligible hospitals and about 20% of eligible healthcare professionals. The Stage 3 phase will add another layer of health data collection and reporting requirements for the participating providers.

Remember, effective January 1, 2015, physicians’ payments from federally funded programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, and Tricare will be modified to be based on the quality of care, not the volume; moreover, this quality of care is based on rules and regulations within healthcare reform. If you are not currently involved in the Meaningful Use program or on an EHR, we recommend these practices and providers to immediately address those needs and think about positioning their practice for the future