• Technology and Your Practice

    • Are You Preparing For Stage Two Meaningful Use Requirements?

      Beginning in 2014, all physicians participating in the federal electronic health record (EHR) meaningful use incentive program must use a Stage two-certified EHR. This is true even for physicians attesting for Stage one meaningful use.

      There are three planned stages of meaningful use. Physicians who already have met two years of Stage one must attest to meeting the Stage two requirements.

  • HIT Helpline - Your TMA Resource for HIT Questions

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  • HIT News

    • New HIPAA Security Risk Tool From HHS
      The Security Risk Assessment (SRA) tool helps small- to medium-sized practices conduct and document a risk assessment to determine potential HIPAA security risks and address them. The SRA website has user tutorials and videos available to help you get started.
    • Texas RECs Offer Free Help to Some Medicaid Specialists
      A grant from Texas Medicaid now allows the four Texas regional extension centers (RECs) to help physicians participating in the Medicaid electronic health record (EHR) meaningful use incentive program. Physicians with at least 30 percent Medicaid volume can receive up to $63,750 in incentives over six years.
    • Meaningful Use Requirements Change in 2014
      Ready for Stage 2? The first year of Stage 2 meaningful use under the Medicare and Medicaid electronic health records (EHRs) incentive programs begins in 2014 for eligible physicians and other health care professionals. Stage 2 brings changes to the program.
    • TMA: Meaningful Use Delay Not All That Meaningful
      The government's decision to postpone Stage 3 meaningful use by extending Stage 2 for a year is not the good news it appears to be, TMA says in a letter to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) officials.

    • Is Your EHR 2014 Certified?
      All electronic health record (EHR) users must upgrade their systems before attesting to meaningful use under Medicare for the 2014 payment year. Regardless of the stage of meaningful use they are trying to meet, they must use a Stage 2-certified product in 2014.
    • Preparing for EHR Divorce
      It's said that choosing an electronic health record (EHR) system is like choosing a spouse. While the majority of EHR unions seem destined for happily ever after, that is not the case with all. Physicians should have an exit strategy as they enter the EHR vendor relationship. The best way to do this is to seek mutually agreeable contract terms.
    • HIEs Ready to Sign Physician Practices
      One of the greatest promises of health information technology and electronic health records is the ability to securely access and share patient information at the point of care. Currently, there are 12 health information exchanges (HIEs) in Texas funded with federal grants that can provide information about patients at the point of care.
  • HIT Tools You Can Use

    • Meaningful Use Achievement Toolkit
      Have you registered for the Medicare EHR Incentive program, but you’re not sure how to meet meaningful use? Turn to TMA’s Meaningful Use Toolkit for detailed instructions about what is required, specific to your EHR product*, to meet any one of the 25 meaningful-use criteria defined by the Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services.
      *The EHRs represented are eClinicalWorks, e-MDs, GE/Centricity, Greenway Medical, and NextGen. 
    • EHR Incentive Program Eligibility Tool
      Are you eligible or exempt? Use this tool from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to determine eligibility for both programs.
    • EHR Product Evaluation Tool
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      Need help finding the right EMR for your practice? Texas Medical Association (TMA) physician members have overwhelmingly indicated to us they need help when it comes to health information technology. They specifically want help with electronic medical record (EMR) selection. TMA is here to help.
    • Learning Modules for the Medicaid EHR Incentive Program
      The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) has two computer-based learning tools to help physicians and hospitals participate in the Texas Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program. The tools are interactive and self-guided with voice or closed-captioned narration.
    • EHR Incentive Program Resources
      Unsure which electronic health record (EHR) incentive program is right for you? TMA has resources to help you make this important decision. Registration opened in January for both EHR incentive programs. If you are one of the many Texas physicians planning to enroll in either program, we recommend you start as soon as possible. 
    • Incentive Calculator
      Calculate your incentives with this tool created by the Harris County Medical Society (HCMS).   membersonlyred(2) 
    • EHR Buyer Beware: Issues to Consider When Contracting with EHR Vendors
      This paper discusses eight important EHR contract terms your medical practice should consider before signing an EHR contract.
    • EMR Readiness Assessment
      This readiness worksheet will provide you with an overview of your organization’s ability to successfully adopt an electronic medical record (EMR) solution.
    • HIPAA Security Risk Tool From HHS
      The Security Risk Assessment (SRA) tool helps small- to medium-sized practices conduct and document a risk assessment to determine potential HIPAA security risks and address them. The SRA website has user tutorials and videos available to help you get started.
    • Questions for EHR Vendors
      Learn some of the important questions to ask vendors during the selection process.
    • Questions for EHR Vendor References
      What questions should you ask when speaking to another practice that currently uses the EHR vendor you are considering?  
  • E-Prescribing News

  • Don’t miss out…

    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has a new listserv about the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs. The listserv will provide timely, authoritative information about the programs, including registration and attestation updates, and details about the payment process.

    By subscribing to the listserv, CMS will keep you informed of upcoming deadlines and give you answers to the questions and concerns that they have gathered from eligible professionals and hospitals in the field. New updates will be emailed through the listserv to keep you informed of any developments, and subscribers will be notified of any new FAQ's that are published on the CMS EHR Incentive Programs’ website. 

    We encourage you to let others know about the CMS EHR listserv, and to share its messages. Click here to join the listserv and learn more.