The Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs offer financial incentives for achieving “meaningful use,” utilizing certified EHR technology to meet health and efficiency goals. This includes Stage 1 and Stage 2 EHR meaningful use objectives for eligible professionals (EPs) outlined by CMS. These objectives aim to establish standards for electronic data capture and information sharing.
Medicare HER Incentive Program
The Medicare program provides incentive payments to eligible professionals demonstrating meaningful use of certified EHR technology. Eligible professionals can receive up to $44,000 over five years, with an additional incentive for those in Health Professional Shortage Areas (HPSA). Maximum incentives are for those who started participation by 2012, with reduced payments for those joining in 2013.
Medical HER Incentive Program Eligibility
The Medicaid program provides incentives for eligible professionals adopting, implementing, upgrading, or demonstrating meaningful use of certified EHR technology. Professionals can receive up to $63,750 over six years, covering the first year of participation and up to five remaining years.
The Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs progress through three stages, each with increasing participation requirements. Providers start by meeting Stage 1 requirements for 90 days in the first year and a full year in the second. Subsequently, they move on to Stage 2 requirements for two full years.
Stage 1 Meaningful Use Requirements (More Details)
Meaningful use includes 15 required core objectives and 5 selected from a menu of 10 for a total of 25 objectives. Providers must meet 20 of these to qualify for incentive payments.
Stage 2 Meaningful Use Requirements (More Details)
Under Stage 2 criteria, EPs must meet 17 core objectives and select 3 from a menu of 6, or a total of 20 core objectives. Stage 2 criteria are effective from fiscal year 2014 for eligible hospitals and CAHs or calendar year 2014 for EPs. This staged approach outlines the progression for Medicare providers participating in the program.