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Nearly half of EPs have received EHR payments


By Joseph Conn
Posted: May 1, 2013 - 1:15 pm ET
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More than a quarter million physicians and other professionals eligible for the federally funded electronic health-record incentive payment programs have received payments, according to the latest government data.

In its monthly update about the programs (PDF), the CMS reports that through March, a total of 255,772 so-called “eligible professionals,” or EPs, have been paid—160,890, or 63% of them so far, through the federally administered Medicare EHR incentive payment program, 83,765, or 33%, through state-run Medicaid programs; and 11,117, or 4%, through the federal Medicare Advantage program.

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Medicare and Medicare Advantage EPs are physicians, optometrists, podiatrists, chiropractors and dentists. Medicaid EPs are physicians, dentists, physician assistants, nurse practitioners and certified nurse-midwifes. Physicians account for roughly 91% of the Medicare EPs, but about 73% of Medicaid EPs, the CMS data shows.

An estimated 527,200 EPs are eligible to participate in the three programs, according to the CMS, so 48.5% of EPs are now paid participants. They've split $5.2 billion since payments began in January 2011.

On the hospital side, 3,858 of 5,011 total eligible hospitals, or 77%, have been paid a combined total of nearly $8.5 billion in EHR incentive money under Medicare, Medicaid or both.

All told, all programs have paid out just over $13.7 billion. The programs were created by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

Follow Joseph Conn on Twitter: @MHJConn


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