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Meaningful Use Overview


CMS has established rules for "meaningful use". It’s not enough just to own a certified EHR. Providers have to show CMS that they are using their EHRs in ways that can positively affect the care of their patients. To do this, providers must meet objectives established by CMS. Meeting these objectives is demonstrating MEANINGFUL USE of your EHRs and is required to receive an incentive payment.


Objectives are what every eligible professional is required to achieve in order to show that they are meaningfully using their EHR. Every objective has an associated measure, which the eligible professional must meet or surpass. Some of the objectives have a minimum percentage that providers have to meet. Other objectives specify an action that must be taken or a functionalit of the EHR that must be enabled for the entire reporting period.


There are exclusions that exempt you from having to meet specific objectives. If you meet the qualifications for an exclusion, they you will not have to report on that objective and can still receive a full EHR incentive payment. These exclusions are typlically applicable to certain specialties who do not perform the actions specified in the objecti ce as normal scope of practice. Make sure you check the exclusion for each objective to see if it applies to you. Remember, if you fail to meet even one of the measures, you will not recive a pament. Meaningful use is all or nothing!


There are Core objective that everyone who participates in the incentive programs must meet. Some of the core objectives have exclusions that could exempt you from having to meet them, but many of them do not. Also, there are Menu objectives from which you can choose the objectives that make sense for you workflow or practice. Again, some of these objectives have exclusions that could exempt you from having to meet them.


In addition to the Core objectives and the Menu objectives, all elible professionals have to report on Clinical Quality Measures. There are no thresholds to meet for Clinical Quality Measures currently. You must simply report the data exactly as it is calculated by your certified EHR.


Confused by all of this? The EHR Guru's are here to help!