TIME IS RUNNING OUT!
2016 is the last year for you to apply and get into EHR Incentive program. eRECORDS has helped thousands of dentists, doctors and optometrists already in applying and receiving the incentive funds.
Please take a moment to contact us, the most trusted experts, for a complimentary assessment.
As part of the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Program was created to provide incentives to qualified providers to adopt and use Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems. This program has been highly successful in increasing the adoption and use of EHR systems for a more paperless office for providers. If you qualify as an eligible provider, you need to learn more about this program to make your practice better. If you want to know your qualification status, please contact us for a complimentary assessment.
This sounds too good to be true!?
Probably the most popular question/comment we've gotten from Doctors and Dentists during our complimentary assessment session.
Let's start with some facts:
You can also visit the official Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services EHR Incentive Program website along with your own State’s official website (e.g. Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Kentucky, Illinois, Louisiana, Minnesota, Missouri, New Mexico, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Pennsylvania, Washington, others (pdf)).
If above is still not good enough of proof, please contact your trusted professional association or local chapter and ask them about either EHR Incentive Program or Meaningful Use.
Even if you're not interested to sign up with us, we encourage you to contact us so we may assist you in getting started with assessing your qualification status and answer any specific questions you may have. We believe 100% in this program and you should do this whether you work with us or not.
What is EHR Incentive Program?
EHR Incentive Program is a proven program that has been helping providers like you to get to a paperless office. The program provides incentives dollars for qualified providers to help them adopt and use Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems to migrate from paper charting to electronic charting of patient visits. If you see Medicare or Medicaid patients, chances are you qualify for this program. The best part is that it is possible to qualify and receive your incentive dollars even if you don’t have an EHR system in your practice. This program is effective because it utilizes “crawl before you walk, walk before you run” concept. That is why the program pays you over 5 or 6 years (depending on if you are qualified through Medicare or Medicaid) so that your qualification and compliance requirements are increased gradually. With the right assistance, participation and receiving the incentive dollars are easy.
What is Meaningful Use?
Chances are, you have heard of “Meaningful Use” from colleagues, advertisement, associations and others. It is becoming a common term but few really understand what it means. To put it simply, Meaningful Use is related to the compliance requirements for receiving incentive dollars. There are different compliance requirements depending on if you go through Medicare versus Medicaid side and how many times you have participated in the program. The compliance requirements range from doing the proper paperwork to reporting on defined EHR system usage requirements for period of time during the calendar year. One key thing to remember is that the compliance is absolute. You must meet all the requirements or you do not get your incentive dollars.
Why should I care?
Simply put, you cannot afford not to care. 2012 CDC EHR adoption survey stated that 72% of the office-based physicians are using EHR systems, a number that has almost doubled since the beginning of this program. If your practice is not using EHR or plan to have one within next few years, then you are in the minority. Other provider segments including Dentistry, is following this trend. Having an EHR system will be mandatory for your practice in the near future regardless of what your practice scope may be. If not, you may be on an island where it would be almost impossible to effectively refer and receive patients, prescribe medication and interact with your most valuable asset, your patients. In addition, the the valuation of your practice and even attractiveness of someone joining your practice could all be affected. And of course, through the use of an EHR system, you may well realize you can deliver better care at a lower cost to you and contribute to the better healthcare delivery.
EHR Incentive Program participation provides you the ability to get the incentive dollars for something that for most of you, must do – Adopt and use an EHR system.
How do I know if I qualify?
There are multiple ways to qualify depending on if you see Medicare or Medicaid (or both) patients.
Medicare - To qualify for the Medicare side of the program, you must be an eligible professional (Doctors of Medicine or Osteopathy, Doctors of Dental Surgery or Dental Medicine, Doctors of Podiatry, Doctors of Optometry and Chiropractors) and as long as you see Medicare patients (Medicare Part B), you can qualify to receive up to $44,000.
Medicaid - To qualify for the Medicaid side, you must be an eligible professional (Physicians, Nurse Practitioners, Certified Nurse-midwives, Dentists, and PA in certain situations) and have at least 30% Medicaid patient visit volume during 90 day qualification period. This qualification period can come from last year's data or, for some states, current year's data.
Medi/Medi – If you qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid, you must choose one since you cannot participate for both in the same year.
It is vital that once you feel you are qualified, you provide indisputable qualification proof documentation for audit protection. Sign up for a 15 minute assessment and we will show you how.
Do Dentists qualify for this program?
Yes, Dentists do qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid programs. For Medicaid, Dentists must meet the Medicaid patient visit volume requirement.
How about Ophthalmologists and Optometrists?
For Ophthalmologists, absolutely. You just need to meet the qualification criteria stated above. For those with Doctor of Optometrist credential, you qualify for Medicare side but for Medicaid, it’s state specific. As far as we can determine, Alabama, California, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, South Carolina and Virginia are current states that allows Optometrists to participate in Medicaid EHR incentive program. For other states, we suggest you contact your local and state associations in getting the state to adopt your scope of practice to be eligible for Medicaid EHR incentive program. Update: Great news! We are now offering our proven program to Optometrists. Please visit our Optometrist page for more information.
Do I need to use an EHR system in order to participate?
You do not need to use a certified EHR in order to participate for the Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs. For the first year of payment, you must prove that you have adopted implemented, upgraded certified EHR technology before you can receive an EHR incentive payment from your State. Choosing the “adopted” path allows participation without having to use an EHR system in your practice.
However, to receive an incentive payment under the Medicare program, you must attest that you have demonstrated meaningful use of certified EHR technology which basically equates to using the certified EHR system in certain ways to meet the usage criteria.
Am I required to use the incentive dollars for anything specific?
Although the incentive dollars are provided to help you in your continuing path towards paperless office, “the incentives are not a reimbursement and may be used at provider’s discretion, similar to a bonus payment”. This is the exact wording from the California’s official provider FAQ document, page 3.
Where can I find all the regulatory text?
Official EHR Incentive Program information can be found below.
Official web page for Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services EHR Incentive Program – Great source to learn about the EHR Incentive Program, FAQs, full regulations and much more.
Official web page about the 47 participating States for the Medicaid EHR Incentive Program – List of 47 that are offering the Medicaid side of the program. For example, California Medicaid EHR Incentive Program web page is here.
What are the deadlines?
For each participating year, you must be compliant by December 31 of that year. However, the paperwork filing and/or reporting can be done as late as end of February of the following year with some states extending the deadline further.
I want more information. What should I do?
To get all your questions answered, please sign up for a 15 minute complimentary assessment. It may be the best 15 minutes you spend this year.
“Worry Free™ Program is like having my own personal Meaningful Use advisor. There is absolutely no way I could have achieved Meaningful Use without being part of this program. With Worry Free™ Program, I don’t have to guess if I am going to achieve Meaningful Use. I know I will. The name is right on. I was able to achieve Meaningful Use in a worry-free way! “