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January 12, 2017

What Does the Future Hold for Meaningful Use?

January 12, 2017

meaningful use

In spite of the healthcare overhaul that has happened over the past few years, things aren’t really looking much easier this year. MACRA, MIPS, and Meaningful Use can be confusing, and while some providers have spent the past few years using their EHR to earn incentives, others are buckling down for some reimbursement deductions to their claims.

So what’s coming up next for Meaningful Use? Let’s take a look.


No matter when you started (or attempted to start) meeting Meaningful Use, you can report either Modified Stage 2 or Stage 3 in 2017. If reporting Stage 2, you must provide a report that includes a full year of data. If you’re attempting to report Stage 3 early, you only have to give 90 days of data (the reward for being on your toes).

Here’s the catch to the Stage 3 reporting: You have to be sure your EHR is able to track and report the required measures while simultaneously having interoperability with other EHRs. If you don’t have that interoperability, you must be working toward the Stage 2 measures.

2016 Data

It’s time to attest or report your data from last year. All Medicare attestations are due by February 28 at 11:59 EST (which puts the West Coast at a disadvantage). Medicaid attestations are different from one state to another, but a CMS-provided resource for your state has been posted here.

In order to be successful with attestation guidelines, it’s wise to collect confirmations of submissions to registries, EHR data copies, and security audits in one place in case of an audit. You should also confirm that EHR data is being calculated correctly.

Make sure that your notes and work for 2016 visits are complete, and that the EHR reporting is set appropriately. Getting inaccurate data from your EHR will cause problems during attestation and during future audits/reporting.

You’ll need your EHR(s) InfoGard certification number in order to attest. If your practice changed EHRs during the reporting period you’re attesting to, you’ll have to attest with data from both EHRs, and you have to state that you used both of them during attestation.

For more information on required items for successful attestation, and to streamline the process, take a look at the CMS resource on how to attest. You can find it here.

The MACRA Factor

In addition to the above, providers will be working toward what has been made available to meet MACRA requirements. Just like with Meaningful Use, it’s easier to start early in 2017 rather than later.

To meet MACRA, providers are either MIPS (merit-based) or APM (advanced alternative). Think of a more applicable, more specific PQRS. Be sure to use your EHRs meaningfully as you track and improve patient outcomes.

CMS plans to use MACRA as far as 2026. More details and rules are coming down the pipe, and your best chance of meeting them is to use a quality EHR as well as you can.

Need more information? Contact MBM today!

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