Home > EHR, meaningful use, Medicare > Major Specialty Societies Meet with CMS Staff

Major Specialty Societies Meet with CMS Staff

On March 21, the American Medical Association (AMA) convened the major specialty societies for a meeting with Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) staff regarding the agency’s Stage 2 EHR Incentive Program Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM).  CMS staff presented a similar slide deck to those used in other events and  provided an opportunity for questions and concerns. Staff from the Office of the National Coordinator for HIT were unfortunately not present to discuss the NPRM on the 2014 Edition EHR certification criteria, standards, and implementation specifications.

Several specialty societies have assigned “meaningful use”-related issues to their quality measurement staff, who are often not in the same department that handles regulatory affairs. Typically, these are the staff for the National Quality Forum endorsement and Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement processes.  So, many comments at the meeting were focused on the clinical quality measure component of CMS’ Stage 2 MU NPRM and various items having to do with the Physician Quality Reporting System reporting-related proposals.

I commended CMS staff for deviating in several key areas from the June 2011 ONC HIT Policy Committee recommendations, which did not factor in the robust recommendations and concerns from AMA and major specialty societies.  I thanked them for the addition of the imaging data access menu objective, but noted a specific problem with the language that will need to be addressed in the final rule.  I also suggested it would be better to remove the “no face-to-face” and “no followup” requirements for the non-proposed prospective fourth significant hardship exemption/exception category, as not being enabled by one’s facility with requisite technology/data constitutes a compliance barrier for hospital-located (but not “hospital-based”) EPs who may or may not have face-to-face interaction with patients.

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Categories: EHR, meaningful use, Medicare
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