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CMS Opens Meaningful Use Hardship Exception Process

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released the application and instructions for the new, streamlined Medicare Electronic Health Record (EHR) hardship exception process. Hospitals and professionals now are required to submit less information to CMS as part of their application.

CMS can categorically grant exceptions for applicants that could not meet meaningful use requirements in 2015 for reasons that include the delay of the meaningful use program modifications final rule. Previously, CMS granted exceptions on a case-by-case basis.

Failure to meet meaningful use requirements or obtain a hardship exception in the 2015 reporting year will result in a payment adjustment in 2017. The deadlines for hospitals and professionals to apply for a hardship exception are April 1 and March 15, respectively.

Contact Director of Policy Erin O’Malley at eomalley@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.