2016 Meaningful Use Public Health Reporting Registration Deadline Approaching
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Meaningful Use final rule released in October of 2015 requires Eligible Providers (EPs) to meet Public Health Objectives for their respective EHR Incentive Programs for 2016. The registration deadline to “submit intent” or connect to Public Health Registries is Monday, February 29, 2016.
In order to meet these requirements, EPs should consider the following:
- For Program year 2016 – all providers must choose from two of the three public health reporting measures (Immunization, Syndromic Surveillance and Specialized Registry) or claim applicable exclusions.
- If a provider has never registered for Stage 2 electronic data submission they must demonstrate active engagement by registering their intent to submit data within 60 days after the start of the EHR reporting period. Providers that are excluding do not need to register.
- For providers that are reporting for a full calendar year the deadline to meet this requirement is 2/29/2016.
Please contact your UCF REC account manager for additional information on meeting this requirement prior to the deadline. Additional information is available on the CMS website.
CMS Launches New Meaningful Use Blanket Hardship Exception Process
CMS has launched important changes to the Medicare Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program hardship exception process that will reduce burdens on EPs. These changes are a result of recent Medicare legislation – the Patient Access and Medicare Protection Act (PAMPA), Pub. L. No. 114-115 – and the agency’s ongoing efforts to improve the program.
Deadline: All EPs who wish to apply for a hardship exception must submit their application by March 15, 2016.
CMS has released an FAQ outlining the documentation requirements for submitting the new hardship application to avoid the 2017 payment adjustment.
FAQ #14113 – On the new hardship application form for the 2017 payment adjustment EPs are not required to submit documentation for the category selected with the application form. CMS will not be reviewing documentation supporting the application on a case-by-case basis. CMS will review the application to record the category selected and use the identifying information to approve the hardship exception for each provider listed on the application. Providers should retain documentation of their circumstances for their own records, but no such documentation is required for review by CMS.
FAQ #12845 – CMS has also updated the FAQ to reflect these changes and to provide additional guidance specific to sub-category 2.2d of PAMPA – EHR Certification/Vendor Issues (CEHRT Issues). This category can be used for issues related to the 2015 rulemaking timeline and is included under the existing category for extreme and uncontrollable circumstances related to the implementation and use of certified EHR technology.
Providers who experienced an issue with their CEHRT related to the rule timing – and any other provider for whom the timing of the rule caused a significant hardship – should select sub-category 2.2d on the 2017 hardship exception application. No additional documentation is required for this selection.
For More Information
To review the hardship exception application and instructions, visit the Payment Adjustments and Hardship Information page on the CMS website.
The UCF REC continues to support providers with meeting existing and future regulations. We are committed to providing you with the most up-to-date and accurate information as it is released by CMS and ONC. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your Account Manager or call the UCF REC office at 407.309.4789.