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Breaking News

National Health IT Week is Sept 26-30, 2016

It's National Health IT Week! Learn more to make the most of it.

EHR Availability in Missouri - Reports Available

In addition to the local public health agencies report available earlier, the following provider reports presenting survey results are now available.


Important Dates for Missouri State Level Registry

Missouri's State Level Registry (SLR) will open for Program Year 2015 for Eligible Hospitals starting September 1, 2016 and remain open through November 30, 2016.

In addition, the SLR will open for Program Year 2016 attestations for Eligible Professionals (EPs) starting September 1, 2016 and remain open through March 31, 2017.

At this time, the SLR will only accept applications for EPs attesting to either AIU (Adopt, Implement, or Upgrade) or their first year of Meaningful Use (MU) in Program Year 2016.

CMS has issued a proposed rule that would change the EHR reporting period to 90 days for PY 2016 for all EPs returning to attest to MU for at least their second time (years 3 – 6). We will announce the date that the SLR will accept applications for EPs returning to attest to MU, after we know the outcome of the proposed rule.


Couldn't Meet 2015 MU? You May Qualify for a Hardship Exception!

CMS has streamlined the hardship exception application process for eligible providers (EPs), eligible hospitals (EHs), and CAHs who experienced significant hardship preventing successful participation. They now allow "categories" of EPs, EHs, and CAHs, and groups of providers to apply for a hardship exception on a single application.

EPs, EHs, and CAHs who did not meet MU for 2015 can apply for a hardship exception prior to July 1, 2016.

Even if you are in the Medicaid EHR incentive program, you will receive penalties to Medicare Part B billings in 2017 if you didn't attest to MU in 2015.

Applications and instructions are available on the EHR Incentive Programs website.

Download the Hardship Exception Application now.


PQRS GPRO Reporting Webinars

NYeC is hosting an overview webinar for 2016 PQRS GPRO reporting on May 26 and June 7. Any group practice with 2 or more providers who bill under the same TIN are invited to register and participate in the webinar. To learn about 2016 changes, strategies to meet PQRS requirements, and how to avoid a 2% potential penalty. Practices that plan to use the GPRO reporting method for 2016 PQRS must take action before June 30th.


Missouri's State Level Registry will be open for Program Year 2015 attestations for Eligible Professionals only on Friday, April 29 and remain open through June 30, 2016.

The attestation period for Program Year 2015 for Eligible Hospitals will begin in September - exact dates will be announced in the fall.

Program Year 2016 is the last year that providers can begin participation - attestations for that program year will be accepted starting later this year.

For more information: http://mo.arraincentive.com/


On April 6th, 2016, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) posted the annual update for electronic clinical quality measures (eCQMs) for eligible hospitals and eligible professionals. Providers will use these updated measures to electronically report 2017 quality data for CMS quality reporting programs.

CMS updates the specifications annually to improve their alignment with current clinical guidelines and code systems so that they remain relevant and actionable within the clinical care setting.

Where to Find the Updated Measures

The updated measure specifications are available on the CMS website eCQM Library and the Electronic Clinical Quality Improvement (eCQI) Resource Center.

  • 29 updated measures for eligible hospitals for the 2017 reporting period

Reporting period for eligible hospitals is defined as the measure data capture period of the calendar year between January 1 and December 31.

  • 64 updated measures for eligible professionals for the 2017 performance period

Performance period for eligible professionals is defined as the measure data capture period of the calendar year between January 1 and December 31.

All of the updated measure specifications have been re-specified using QDM 4.2 based-HQMF version R 2.1.

How to Download the Measures

To download the measures from CMS.gov, pull down the entire set of EH or EP measures in their respective zip files using the links.

To obtain the value sets for the eCQMs, you can download packages in multiple file formats from the "Downloads" page at the Value Set Authority Center (VSAC). The value sets are available as a complete set, as well as value sets per measure. You will be required to login with Unified Medical Language System® Metathesaurus License credentials, also available through the VSAC website. The Data Element Catalog, an additional resource linked on the VSAC home page, contains the complete list of updated eCQMs and value set names.

Additional eCQM Resources can be found on the eCQI Resource Center.


TRAINING OPPORTUNITY!

Continuing Education Credits

Learning and Action Virtual Annual Conference on Thursday, April 7

Please plan to attend the TMF QIN-QIO "Learning and Action Virtual Annual Conference" on Thursday, April 7! This is a free all-day virtual event offering continuing education credits. The agenda is packed full of excellent topics and speakers, and there's something for everyone.

For more information, please visit the Event Web page: https://www.tmfqin.org/2016-Virtual-LAN-Event

Please Register at your earliest convenience: Registration page: Register Now!


We are excited to share the Health IT Buzz Blog announcing the release of the Million Hearts® EHR Optimization Guides. These vendor-specific guides offer step by step instructions for providers to leverage their EHR systems to find, use, and improve data on cardiovascular measures. We anticipate these guides will facilitate the identification of at-risk patients, and hope that they will help providers and clinical teams protect their patients from heart attacks, strokes, and other cardiovascular events. So far, we have completed guides for Allscripts, Cerner, and NextGen, though we are working with other EHR vendors to develop additional guides to be posted on the Million Hearts® Resource Center of HealthIT.gov.

https://www.healthit.gov/buzz-blog/million-hearts/million-hearts-ehr-opt...

About Million Hearts®

Million Hearts® is a national initiative to prevent 1 million heart attacks and strokes by 2017. It unites communities, health systems, nonprofit organizations, federal agencies, and private-sector partners from across the country to fight heart disease and stroke by improving the ABCS: Aspirin therapy, Blood pressure control, Cholesterol management, and Smoking cessation.


Important Reminder to Medicaid Providers: The Medicaid EHR Meaningful Use Incentive Program is in effect until 2021.

Attestations for Program Year 2015 will be accepted in Missouri's State Level Registry beginning in April, specific dates to be announced soon.

Program Year 2016 is the last year that providers can begin participation - attestations for that program year will be accepted starting later this year.


 
EHR Payment Adjustments & Hardship Information
The streamlined hardship applications reduce the amount of information that eligible professionals (EPs), eligible hospitals, and CAHs must submit to apply for an exception. The new applications and instructions for a hardship exception from the Medicare Electronic Health Records Incentive Program 2017 payment adjustment are available here. This link also includes information regarding payment adjustment reconsideration application instructions for the Medicare EHR incentive program.


EHR Incentive Programs: Where We Go Next (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services)

As we mentioned in a speech last week, the Administration is working on an important transition for the Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program. We have been working side by side with physician organizations and have listened to the needs and concerns of many about how... (more)


CMS to End Meaningful Use in 2016

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced this week that it will be ending the "meaningful use" EHR Incentive Program in 2016.

The announcement-delivered by CMS Acting Administrator Andy Slavitt in a speech at a J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference on Tuesday-follows months of requests from physician and other health stakeholder groups to slow the program down and loosen its requirements.

CMS had announced stage 3 meaningful use guidelines in October which followed a series of proposed changes to the program, including payment adjustments and the creation of hardship exemptions.

In remarks at the J.P. Morgan conference and on Twitter, Slavitt said further specifics on exactly what will replace meaningful use will be forthcoming, though it will be tied to the implementation of Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) and include streamlining various quality reporting programs.

What remains to be seen, however, is whether CMS will still penalize eligible providers for not meeting stage 1 meaningful use requirements, or whether eligible providers should even bother continuing to track their progress on the meaningful use measures for reporting this year. Albright declined to respond to those questions at press time.


CMS seeks public comment on HIT and EHR products

Hardship Exemption from 2015 Meaningful Use Penalties


CMS Releases Final Meaningful Use Program Rules

Read more...

Register for CMS' National Provider Call on Registration and Attestation

CMS is holding a National Provider Call on Thursday, June 7, from 1:30 - 3:00 pm EDT for eligible professionals (EPs) to learn about registration and attestation for the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs.

This is the last year EPs can earn the full Medicare incentive payment. Join the call to learn more about how to participate in the programs, including:

What You Don't Know About Privacy and Security Can Hurt You - Advanced Webinar Series

May 25, 2012 - You are working towards attesting to Stage 1 meaningful use, but you still have to tackle the Core Meaningful Use Measure regarding Security and Risk Analysis. Now what? Read more »

MO Provider Meaningful Use Survey

The Missouri HIT Assistance Center and Missouri Health Connection (MHC) are partnering on an online statewide provider survey. Please take a few minutes to fill this out and complete by May 31, 2012. Read more »

ONC's New Guide on Health Information, Privacy and Security and Meaningful Use

ONC's Office of the Chief Privacy Officer (OCPO) recently released a "Guide to Privacy and Security of Health Information,"* an instructional guide designed to help healthcare practitioners, staff, and other professionals better understand the important role privacy and security play in the use of electronic health records (EHRs) and Meaningful Use. Read more »

MSMA Training Opportunity: Patient Centered Medical Home, May 2012

Patient Centered Medical Home: Leading to the Future

May 12 - St. Luke's Hospital Emerson Auditorium, 224 S. Woods Mill Road, Chesterfield, MO
May 19 - National WWI Museum Auditorium, 100 West 26 Street, Kansas City, MO
Both sessions will be 8 am - 12 pm. Read more »

HHS settles case with Phoenix Cardiac Surgery for lack of HIPAA safeguards

Phoenix Cardiac Surgery, P.C., of Phoenix and Prescott, Arizona, has agreed to pay the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) a $100,000 settlement and take corrective action to implement policies and procedures to safeguard the protected health information of its patients.

The settlement with the physician practice follows an extensive investigation by the HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR) for potential violations of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) Privacy and Security Rules. Read more »

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EHRhelp@missouri.edu
573-882-6178

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Are You Eligible?

Check this CMS Flow Chart to help determine your eligibility for the Medicare and Medicaid EHR incentive programs.

EHR Success Stories

Here's a recap of some of the highlights in 2015! Read a holiday message from MU Health CEO & COO Mitch Wasden:

The devastating tornado that swept through Joplin, Missouri on May 22 completely destroyed a number of physician offices, including that of Tracy Godfrey, MD, a Family Practitioner with the Family Health Center of Joplin. But thanks to electronic health records, Godfrey had access to all of her patients' information, and in less than three days after the catastrophe, the practice was able to reopen its doors at a temporary location. More EHR Success Stories