The CMS has paid out $75 million to healthcare providers that are meaningful users of health information technology in its first such payments under the Medicare portion of the electronic health record incentive payment program authorized by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
CMS issues first Medicare EHR payments, revises proposed e-prescribing rules
"We can bring America's healthcare system into the 21st century by adopting electronic health records and using electronic prescribing systems," CMS Administrator Dr. Donald Berwick said in a news release Thursday.
"Today's announcements are steps on the right path—toward the health IT system America needs, which will save lives, save money and save time,” Berwick said.
According to the release, the Medicare money started flowing May 19.
State-based Medicaid programs, which have their own EHR incentive payment plans under the stimulus law and don't require providers to meet federal meaningful-use targets the first year, began making payments in January in several states.
A nine-page list of qualifying Medicare incentive program providers is posted at the CMS' website.
The CMS also announced proposed rule changes (PDF) in its electronic prescribing incentive program that provides financial incentives and payment adjustments beginning Jan. 1, 2012, for eligible providers to encourage electronic prescribing.
"The proposals announced today would provide exemptions from the payment adjustment for providers who plan to participate in the program but who face certain barriers to using electronic prescribing systems or meeting program requirements that may be beyond their control," according to the release.
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