Despite rumors that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) would be making an announcement regarding stage 2 of meaningful use at HIMSS this week, deadlines for both meaningful use and ICD-10 remain firmly in place.
Regarding ICD-10, CMS administrator Marilyn Tavenner clearly stated that there would be no more delays. “Let’s face it guys, we’ve delayed this several times and it’s time to move on.” Unsurprisingly, the American Medical Association (AMA) was very disappointed with this news, citing concerns that CMS’ last-minute ICD-10 testing won’t be enough to prevent problems that may happen during the transition to ICD-10. “At the end of the day, sticking hard and fast to the ICD-10 deadline without a back-up plan to address disruptions in medical claims processing will hurt doctors and their patients,” AMA said.
The deadline for stage 2 remains the same as well—hospitals must begin attesting by July 1, eligible providers by October 1—but CMS has added some exemptions. During 2014, EPs and hospitals can request a hardship exemption if they fall under one of these situations:
- They lack availability of 2014 certified EHR technology
- Their EHR vendor is unable to upgrade their current EHR in time to meet meaningful use
- The practice/hospital is unable to incorporate stage 2 requirements into their workflow in time to attest
CMS still expects providers to fully meet meaningful use requirements in 2015, but realizes that, despite their best efforts, some vendors and practices won’t quite be ready to attest this year.
For more, see Modern Healthcare.