What’s New for Meaningful Use Stage 1 in 2014?

Starting in 2014 new requirements go into effect for Eligible Providers (EPs) who are attesting for Meaningful Use Stage 1.

Who does this effect?

Providers participating in the Medicare EHR Incentive Program who:

  • Attested for their first year of Meaningful Use Stage 1 in 2013, and therefore will be attesting for their second year of Meaningful Use Stage 1 in 2014.
  • Will be attesting for the first time in 2014, making this their first year of Meaningful Use Stage 1.

Providers participating in the Medicaid EHR Incentive Program who:

  • Attested to Adopting, Implementing, or upgrading in 2012 or 2013, and are attesting for Meaningful Use Stage 1 in 2014.

To verify which Stage you are in you can use the Timeline tool created by CMS by clicking on the link below.

EHR Timeline

 

 

 

 

 

After entering which program you are participating in and entering your first year of participation you can click on 2014 and it will tell you which stage you will be in this year as demonstrated below.

Stage1

New Requirement:

  • Patient Electronic Access: Addition of new core objective to provide patients with ability the view online, download, and transmit health information for all providers.

Modifications to Existing Requirements:

  • Record and Chart Changes in Vital Signs: Increase in age limit for recording blood pressure in patients to age 3 (was formerly age 2); removal of age limit requirement for height and weight.
  • Record and Chart Changes in Vital Signs: Change to the exclusions for EPs.
    (1) See no patients 3 years or older are excluded from recording blood pressure
    (2) Believe that all three vital signs of height, weight, and blood pressure have no relevance to their scope of practice are excluded from recording them.
    (3) Believe that height and weight are relevant to their scope of practice, but blood pressure is not, are excluded from recording blood pressure.
    (4) Believe that blood pressure is relevant to their scope or practice, but height and weight are not, are excluded from recording height and weight.

Requirements that have been removed:

  • Electronic Copy of Health Information: The objective for providing electronic copies of health information will no longer be required for Stage 1. CMS is replacing this objective and electronic access to health information with the objective to provide patients the ability to view, download, or transmit their health information online.
  • Clinical Quality Measures (CQMs): The separate objective to report CQMs will no longer be required; however, the actual reporting of CQMs will still be required in order to achieve meaningful Use.
  • Electronic Access to Health Information: The menu objective for timely access to health information will no longer be an option for Stage 1 as CMS is replacing this objective and the electronic copy of health information objective with the new objective to provide patients the ability to view, download, or transmit their health information online.

What do you need to do in order to comply with these changes?

Medisoft Clinical, LytecMD, and Practice Partner clients must upgrade to v11.0 of the EHR PRIOR to starting their attestation period in 2014. Please contact your account manager at AZCOMP to coordinate this upgrade.

Practice Choice customers will automatically be upgraded to the 2014 certified version on June 30, 2014, therefore they cannot begin their 2014 reporting period until July 1, 2014.

Special Reporting Periods in 2014:

For 2014 only, all providers regardless of their stage of meaningful use are only required to demonstrate meaningful use for a 3-month EHR reporting period. For Medicare providers, this 3-month reporting period is fixed to the quarter of either the fiscal (for eligible hospitals and CAHs) or calendar (for EPs) year in order to align with existing CMS quality measurement programs, such as the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS). The 3-month reporting period is not fixed for Medicaid EPs and hospitals that are only eligible to receive Medicaid EHR incentives, where providers do not have the same alignment needs. CMS is permitting this one-time 3-month reporting period in 2014 only so that all providers who must upgrade to 2014 Certified EHR Technology will have adequate time to implement their new Certified EHR systems.

Remaining Reporting Periods for 2014: (For those participating in the Medicare program)

  • July 1- September 30, 2014 (If you did NOT attest in 2013 you should select this reporting period and complete your attestation no later than October 1, 2014 in order to avoid the 1% payment adjustment that will be applied January 1, 2015 for those providers who have not demonstrated meaningful use.)
  • October 1- December 31, 2014

Providers that successfully attested in 2013 will be exempt from the payment adjustment and have until the end of February 2014 to attest for Meaningful Use for either of the above reporting periods.

Under Medicare, providers must continue to demonstrate meaningful use every year to avoid payment adjustments in subsequent years.

If a provider is eligible to participate in both the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs, they must demonstrate meaningful use to avoid the Medicare payment adjustment, however they  may select to demonstrate meaningful use under either Medicare or Medicaid.

Providers that only bill Medicaid are not subject to any payment adjustments.

Helpful Resources:
For more information on Changes to Stage 1, view the EHR Incentive Programs: What’s New for Stage 1 in 2014 document available at cms.gov.

For information on the EHR Incentive program visit http://cms.gov/Regulations-and-Guidance/Legislation/EHRIncentivePrograms/index.html

For information on payment adjustments visit http://cms.gov/Regulations-and-Guidance/Legislation/EHRIncentivePrograms/PaymentAdj_Hardship.html

Disclaimer: AZCOMP Technologies, Inc, (AZCOMP) is providing this material as an informational reference for eligible professionals. Although every reasonable effort has been made to assure the accuracy of the information within these pages at the time of posting, the Medicare/Medicaid programs are constantly changing, and it is the sole responsibility of each provider to remain abreast of  program requirements by consulting the authorities and documentation found directly at cms.gov.