Brief reprieve on requirement to electronically submit quality measures

July 21, 2011

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) gave physicians a break in its recently proposed rule on meaningful use requirements for electronic health records (EHRs). The revision would allow eligible providers (EPs) to ?continue to report clinical quality measure results as calculated by certified EHR technology by attestation? through 2012. Previously, CMS had required eligible providers (EPs) to start submitting quality measures electronically to CMS next year.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) gave physicians a break in its recently proposed rule on meaningful use requirements for electronic health records (EHRs).

The revision would allow eligible providers (EPs) to “continue to report clinical quality measure results as calculated by certified EHR technology by attestation” through 2012. Previously, CMS had required EPs to start submitting quality measures electronically to CMS next year.

CMS realized that “it is not feasible to receive electronically the information necessary for clinical quality measure reporting based solely” on use of the reporting technology specified in the final rule published last July. 

EPs and practices wishing to submit clinical quality measures electronically in 2012, however, could maximize incentive payments and meet meaningful use requirements by participating in the newly-announced Physician Quality Reporting System-Medicare EHR Incentive Pilot.

To encourage participation, physicians who submit clinical quality measures for the full year using one of the specified electronic options would be eligible for incentive payments from both the physician quality reporting system and EHR programs.

Physicians who attest initially that they will participate in the Physician Quality Reporting System-Medicare EHR Incentive Pilot but then find the program unsuitable for them, may submit quality measures using the attestation module on the CMS Web site.

The proposed rule is open for comments until August 20.

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