Friday, July 8, 2011

Mostashari Supports Meaningful Use Stage 2 Delay

The Health IT Policy Committee is now receiving backing support by the National Health IT Coordinator Dr. Farzad Mostashari to delay the start of  Stage 2 meaningful use until 2014.  Dr. Mostashari and the Committee both believe that by keeping Stage 2 on its current schedule, it would make it near near impossible for doctors to update their electronic health record (EHR) systems and meet requirements on time.  Updates would have be made between when the final rules are posted in the summer of 2012 and when they need to be attested in 2013.   In fact, Dr. Mostashari said it would be "infeasible, and therefore could have a detrimental effect on keeping providers on the meaningful use escalator."

The potential conflict in postponing Stage 2 meaningful use until 2014 is that doctors who have already attested or will attest in 2011 might feel penalized for being an early starter.  Those who were planning on EHR implementation this year might feel discouraged to do so because of the delay.  This could, in turn, end up negatively affecting the quality and accuracy of patient care that meaningful use was aimed to achieve.  The goal of the delay would be for those attest for Stage 1 in both 2011 and 2012 to be fully updated and ready to attest to Stage 2 in 2014.

1 comment:

  1. There would likely be no problem with delaying Stage 2 if early adopters that implement in 2011 were guaranteed to get their full incentive payments. Some early information suggested a financial penalty to those who attested in 2011.

    I trust most practices, our included, won't be moving to EHR for the financial incentive. The real motivation will be the increased efficiencies inside and outside of the practice. But there is no way that a practice that planned and implemented around the previously established guidelines should lose incentive money because the "roadmap" changed.