Earlier this week, McKnight’s reported on a study from the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York relating to the length of stay at for-profit versus nonprofit hospice providers. This study showed that, of the 600 Medicare certified hospices nationwide, for-profit hospices were more likely to have patients with a longer expected stay than nonprofit hospices. Continue Reading →
The Meaningful Use Workgroup provided its recommendations on Meaningful Use Stage 3 to the Health IT Policy Committee on February 4. Stage 3 would focus on improving outcomes. Further discussion of the recommendations will be held on February 14. The proposed timeline sets proposed rulemaking for fall 2014 and final rulemaking for the first half of 2015. Stage 3 would be effective as of 2017. To see the draft recommendations, click here. Continue Reading →
CMS announced last week that it is extending the deadline for eligible professionals to attest to meaningful use for the Medicare Electronic Health Record (“EHR”) Incentive Program 2013 reporting year from 11:59 PM ET on February 28, 2014 to 11:59 PM ET March 31, 2014. This extension will allow more time for eligible professionals to submit their meaningful use data and receive an incentive payment for the 2013 program year as well as avoid the 2015 payment adjustment. Continue Reading →
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (“CMS”) published important payment adjustment information this week for health care providers participating in the Medicare Electronic Health Records Incentive Program (“Incentive Program”). Continue Reading →
Regulations to extend the exception from the Stark Law and safe harbor from the Anti-Kickback Statute for the donation of electronic health records (“EHRs”) have been cleared by the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) and will be published on December 27. The relevant provisions of the amendments are: (1) the exception/safe harbor for EHR donations is extended through December 31, 2021; (2) an EHR is deemed interoperable if it is a certified EHR by a certifying body authorized by the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology; and (3) laboratory companies are no longer eligible donors. Continue Reading →
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (“ONC”) has announced a webinar regarding the proposed regulatory timeline for electronic health record (“EHR”) certification criteria for 2015. The webinar will take place on Wednesday, December 18 at 4:30 PM and is scheduled to last 30 minutes. You can register here.
If you have questions regarding certified EHR technology or meaningful use, please contact Alisa Kuehn at 317-977-1475 or email@example.com or your regular Hall Render attorney.
CMS has indicated that it intends to extend Stage 2 of meaningful use attestation under the Medicare/Medicaid Electronic Health Record (“EHR”) Incentive Program. In a recent blog post, CMS states that the new or modified Stage 3 requirements for becoming a meaningful user of a certified EHR technology will not be effective until 2017 for those eligible professionals and eligible hospitals that first attested to Stage 1 in 2011 or 2012. The pronouncement by CMS does not delay Stage 2 but rather simply provides guidance that the earliest date that Stage 3 will be effective is 2017. For any eligible professional or eligible hospitals first attesting to Stage 1 on or after 2013, the timetable previously announced by CMS remains in place, which will require two years of attestation to each of Stage 1, Stage 2 and Stage 3. Eligible providers and eligible hospitals should remember that the blog post only signals CMS’s intent and does not change any current meaningful use regulations. Continue Reading →
The FCC has opened the comment period on three Rural Health Care Program participants’ appeals of Universal Service Administrative Company decisions denying Healthcare Connect Fund (“HCF”) support for Illinois Rural HealthNet, Colorado Telehealth Network and Oregon Health Network (see our previous blog post on the subject). At issue is whether health care provider service locations that are urban, but are not licensed bed hospitals (or other eligible entities), are eligible locations under the HCF. The locations at issue primarily consist of employed physician offices. Comments are due December 20, 2013, and reply comments are due January 3, 2014.
The Oregon Health Network (“OHN”) has appealed to the FCC an adverse ruling by USAC regarding whether health care provider service locations that are urban, but are not licensed bed hospitals (or other eligible entities), will qualify for funding under the Healthcare Connect Fund (“HCF”). The determination of this issue will clarify whether the scope of the HCF is intended to include only urban hospitals or all participants in the continuum of care and will likely affect the scope and design of networks that rely on the HCF for subsidy in order to provide advanced telehealth services to the rural population. The full text of the OHN appeal is located here. Continue Reading →
This month, the Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) announced it is redefining the 2014 certification criteria for Certified Electronic Health Record Technology (“CEHRT”) for the Meaningful Use Incentive Program. The previous 2011 CEHRT criteria required that eligible providers have complete CEHRT capable of meeting all certification criteria for an inpatient or ambulatory setting. However, some stakeholders felt that the 2011 CEHRT criteria did not account for eligible providers’ scope of practice and required purchasing CEHRT capabilities that were not necessary to successfully attest as a Meaningful User. Continue Reading →