TMA is "disappointed and frustrated" with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' (CMS') insistence on going forward with Stage 3 meaningful use and its resistance to significantly reform Stage 2. "These rules will only serve to penalize physicians who participate in Medicare and hinder progress on the adoption of EHRs and the exchange of information," TMA and the medical associations of California, Florida, and New York told CMS Acting Administrator Andy Slavitt in a Dec. 15 letter.
TMA wants the electronic health record (EHR) incentive program to have "feasible and attainable requirements to help physicians achieve these goals rather than act as a burden and hindrance to EHR use by physicians."
TMA urges CMS to immediately delay the Stage 3 meaningful use program. The letter states that it "does not make sense to move to Stage 3 when the vast majority of physicians are not meeting Stage 2." The letter also states "the move would be premature when CMS has not yet adopted regulations to implement the new Merit-Based Incentive Program (MIPS) under the new Medicare payment reform law (MACRA) that Congress passed earlier this year [in 2015]."
TMA wants CMS to implement reforms for Stage 2 of the meaningful use program, requesting that CMS eliminate the "all-or-nothing approach and give physicians proportional credit for the measures that are successfully completed." TMA and the other three medical associations also want an expansion of the hardship exemptions and a focus on interoperability, asking CMS to prioritize "implementation of an infrastructure to exchange health care information and ensure that certified EHR technology is capable of meeting the Meaningful Use requirements."
Meanwhile, in an address last week to the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco, Mr. Slavitt declared, "The Meaningful Use program as it has existed, will now be effectively over and replaced with something better. … The focus will move away from rewarding providers for the use of technology and towards the outcome they achieve with their patients."
Action, Jan. 18, 2016
Last Updated On
January 15, 2016