The Recovery Act provides Medicare and Medicaid incentive payments to eligible providers, such as physicians and hospitals, in order to increase the adoption of electronic health records (EHRs). To receive the incentive payments, providers must demonstrate “meaningful use” of a certified EHR. Building upon the work done by the HIT Policy Committee, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), along with the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC), will be developing a proposed rule that provides greater detail on the incentive program and proposes a definition of meaningful use. CMS expects to issue the proposed rule in late 2009, which will be followed by a comment period.
The recommendations discussed represent extensive work by the Committee’s Meaningful Use Workgroup to review and evaluate diverse ideas and contributions from Workgroup members along with information from a public hearing on meaningful use convened in April by the National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics (NCVHS). The NCVHS hearing brought together key healthcare and information technology stakeholder groups. The workgroup also reviewed written comments from additional diverse stakeholders.