Iowa first state to receive EHR incentive funding

December 28, 2009

Iowa?s Medicaid program is the first to receive federal matching funds for planning activities necessary to implement the electronic health record (EHR) incentive program established by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, according to an announcement from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).

Iowa’s Medicaid program is the first to receive federal matching funds for planning activities necessary to implement the electronic health record (EHR) incentive program established by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, according to an announcement from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The state will receive approximately $1.16 million in federal matching funds.

“While Iowa is the first state to receive approval of its plan for implementing the Recovery Act’s EHR incentive program, a number of other states have submitted plans as well,” said Cindy Mann, director of the Center for Medicaid and State Operations at CMS, in a prepared statement. “Meaningful and interoperable use of EHRs in Medicaid will increase health care efficiency, reduce medical errors, and improve quality outcomes and patient satisfaction within and across the states.”

Iowa will use its federal funds to conduct a comprehensive analysis to determine the current status of healthcare information technology (HIT) activities in the state. As part of that process, the state government will gather information on issues such as existing barriers to its use of EHRs, provider eligibility for EHR incentive payments, and the creation of a state Medicaid HIT plan. Iowa also will assess expectations of its incentive payment recipients and their need for personal health records.