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CMS Extends Meaningful Use Timeline

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) released the final rule outlining modifications to the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs for 2014. This final rule extends stage 2 requirements, delays stage 3 requirements, and changes the definition of certified EHRs. This change in definition allows hospitals participating in the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs to use EHRs certified based on 2011 standards, 2014 standards, or a combination thereof, for the fiscal year (FY) 2014 reporting period. Previously, hospitals were required to report exclusively through EHRs certified to 2014 standards. This change gives hospitals one additional year to increase EHR functionality to 2014 standards. The change does not apply to hospitals looking to qualify for Medicaid EHR incentive payments for the first time in FY 2014, however.

Please contact Xiaoyi Huang, JD, director of policy, at xhuang@essentialhospitals.org or 202.585.0127 with questions.

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About the Author

Matt Buechner is the policy and advocacy associate for America's Essential Hospitals.

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