Read CMS' Press Release and Fact Sheet to Learn More about the Stage 2 Final Rule
Today, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published the final rule for Stage 2 of the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs. The rule provides new criteria that eligible professionals (EPs), eligible hospitals, and critical access hospitals (CAHs) must meet in order to successfully participate in the EHR Incentive Programs.
“The changes we’re announcing today will lead to more coordination of patient care, reduced medical errors, elimination of duplicate screenings and tests and greater patient engagement in their own care,” Secretary Sebelius said.
Through the Stage 2 requirements of the EHR Incentive Programs, CMS will expand meaningful use of certified EHR technology. The rule made consolidated several existing Stage 1 objectives and added new objectives for Stage 2. There will be 20 measures for EPs (17 core and 3 of 6 menu) and 19 measures for eligible hospitals (16 core and 3 of 6 menu) in Stage 2.
Stage 2 Timing
In the Stage 1 meaningful use regulations, CMS established an original timeline that would have required Medicare providers who first demonstrated meaningful use in 2011 to meet the Stage 2 criteria in 2013. The Stage 2 rule delays the onset of Stage 2 criteria. Any provider that attests to Stage 1 of meaningful use in 2011 or 2012 will attest to Stage 2 in 2014 instead of 2013. Therefore providers will not be required to demonstrate Stage 2 of meaningful use before 2014. For more information about the final rule see the CMS Stage 2 Final Rule Fact Sheet.