CMS recently released a new rule allowing flexibility in certified EHR technology for meeting meaningful use in 2014. The rule also finalizes the extension of Stage 2 through 2016 for certain providers, and it announces that Stage 3 will now begin in 2017.
Here’s more on the key elements of the final rule that physicians and their practices should be aware of:
1. Greater flexibility. Eligible providers will now be able to use 2011 edition certified EHR technology (CEHRT), or a combination of 2011 and 2014 edition certified EHR technology for an EHR reporting period in 2014. In 2015, all eligible professionals will be required to use the 2014 edition CEHRT.
2. Long reporting period. While more flexibility for providers may be a step in the right direction, the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME), said more could be done to ensure that higher numbers of providers could satisfy the meaningful use criteria.
Prior to the release of the final rule, the organization, and many others, had pushed CMS to allow providers to choose any quarterly EHR reporting period to qualify for meaningful use in 2015, rather than requiring 365-days of reporting. The 365-day reporting period could take a toll on many physicians.
3. Useful resources. A solid understanding of how the new rule applies to your practice’s meaningful use journey is critical. Here are a few helpful resources:
* Click here to view an updated meaningful use timeline and a chart with 2011 and 2014 CEHRT edition options.
* Click here to use an interactive tool to determine your 2014 options.
* Click here to view a chart detailing the 2014 participation options.
* Click here to view a guide that provides resources based on the 2014 options.