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Un-complicating Healthcare IT

7 Things To Know About The Latest Meaningful Use Updates

Oct 20, 2015 7:15:00 AM Posted by Paul Sliva | Sr. Healthcare IT Consultant

Meaningful Use Stage 2 Final Rule The Meaningful Use stage 3 and modified stage 2 rules have finally arrived. As promised, CMS made several changes to stage 2 to more closely align with Stage 3 and make an easier transition from stage 1 to stage 2. Many of the Stage 2 changes, now referred to as “Modified Stage 2,” ease some of the original stage 2 rules that were technically difficult or required patient engagement.

So what does this mean for you and your healthcare organization?

Here are 7 things you should know about the rule changes for 2015 to 2017:

  1. The original “Core” and “Menu” objectives are replaced by 9 objectives for Eligible Hospitals and Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs) and 10 objectives for Eligible Professionals (EPs)
  2. A 90 day reporting period for 2015, then 1 year reporting period after that for all providers
  3. For Eligible Hospitals and CAH’s;
    1. The reporting period moves from federal fiscal year (FFY) to calendar year
    2. ePrescribe is now required (exemption for those that did not plan to use this menu item)
  4. Secure messaging changed to “Functionality enabled (Y/N) for 2015” and “One message sent by EP to the patient” for 2016
  5. Patient Electronic Access (was View, Download, and Transmit) is changed to at least 1 patient who views, downloads or transmits to a third party during the reporting period for 2015 and 2016
  6. Public health reporting reassure were consolidated into four Measures; EPs are still required to meet two and EP’s/CAH’s must meet three
  7. There are no changes to Clinical Quality Measures (CQM) reporting

Stage 3 increases the objective measures further while still following the same basic structure of the modified stage 2. CMS states that the comment period is still open for Stage 3, so there may be some changes to Stage 3 objective requirements down the road. Stage 3 certainly raises the bar, especially with respect to interoperability. There is a high emphasis on electronic communications and the ability to easily exchange information between care settings and EHR systems.

If you’d like to read the final rule, you can do so here. CMS also has a number of “Tip Sheets” available at the EHR Incentive Program website.

Looking for Meaningful Use Assistance?

If you need assistance with meeting Meaningful Use, consider a partner like ICE. Whether you need to conduct a Risk Assessment, need assistance in setting up your system, or technical assistance to meet Meaningful Use, we have resources to help you.

Successful Community Hospital Meaningful Use Stage 2 AttestationRead about how we helped one of our clients achieve Meaningful Use Stage 2 and 100% Medical Staff User Adoption. 


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Paul Sliva | Sr. Healthcare IT Consultant

Paul provides healthcare providers with a variety of Strategic Advisory and CIO services such as software selection and implementation projects, Meaningful Use incentive reimbursement, and IT strategic planning. Paul enjoys solving healthcare business issues using practical strategies and methods, partnered with solid IT resources to get the best possible outcomes for clients.