CMS Extends Deadline for Meaningful Use and Some PQRS Measures

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is giving physicians an extra three weeks to attest they have made “Meaningful Use” of electronic health records, the agency announced Wednesday.

“Eligible professionals now have until 11:59 p.m. ET on March 20, 2015, to attest to meaningful use for the Medicare Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program 2014 reporting year,” CMS said in a press release. “CMS extended the deadline to allow providers extra time to submit their meaningful use data. CMS continues to urge providers to begin attesting for 2014 as soon as they can.” The original deadline for attestation was Feb. 28.

“Meaningful Use” refers to provisions in the 2009 Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, which authorized incentive payments through Medicare and Medicaid to clinicians who use electronic health records (EHRs) in a meaningful way to significantly improve clinical care.

CMS also extended until March 20 the deadline for certain types of data submission for the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) program. That extension applies to “EHR Direct or Data Submission Vendor that is certified EHR technology (CEHRT), [and] Qualified clinical data registries … reporting for PQRS and the clinical quality measure (CQM) component of meaningful use for the Medicare Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program,” the agency said in a statement Wednesday.

PQRS provides an incentive payment to individual eligible professionals (EPs) and group practices that satisfactorily participate or satisfactorily report data on quality measures for covered Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) services. Additionally, those who do not meet the 2014 PQRS reporting requirements will be subject to a negative payment adjustment on all Medicare Part B PFS services rendered in 2016.

For questions, please contact the QualityNet Help Desk 1-866-288-8912 or via email at Qnetsupport@hcqis.org from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. Central Time. Complete information about PQRS is available at http://www.cms.gov/Medicare/Quality-Initiatives-Patient-Assessment-Instruments/PQRS/index.html

The North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) also has staff well-versed in attesting for Meaningful Use and the various quality reporting requirements. Contact Terri Gonzalez, Director of Practice Improvement, or Jennifer Gasperini, Director of Health Policy with questions.

Another useful resource is this list of qualified registries for Meaningful Use.

 
 

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