The three-page letter sent to HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell on Monday, undersigned by the American Medical Association, the American Hospital Association, the Federation of American Hospitals, the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives, the Medial Group Management Association and the Association of Medical Directors of Information Systems and 11 other groups warned that “we're convinced that program success hinges on addressing the 2015 reporting period requirements.”
“To date, only 143 hospitals and 3,152 (physicians and other) EPs have demonstrated an ability to meet Stage 2 requirements” using EHRs tested and certified to the 2014 Edition software standards needed for use in the program, according to the letter. “This presents less than 4% of the hospitals required to be Stage 2 ready within the next 15 days. And while eligible professionals have more time, they are in comparatively worse shape, with only 1.3% of their cohort having met the Stage 2 bar.”
“We believe that giving providers a small amount of additional time to complete the transition to Stage 2 is the right policy to keep the program on track,” they said.
Through July, the program, created under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, has paid out nearly $24.8 billion (PDF) to almost 411,000 healthcare providers.
But the program has hit snags recently as providers have struggled to acquire and implement EHRs tested and certified to 2014 Edition criteria, forcing the feds to back off once already this year on 2014 criteria.
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