Poor MU Showing Renews Calls For Change

Mike Miliard | Healthcare IT News | November 5, 2014

'These numbers continue to underscore the need for a sensible glide-path in 2015'

A fresh batch of disheartening Stage 2 attestation numbers has prompted several industry groups to once again implore the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to shorten the meaningful use reporting period in 2015.  Officials from the AMA, CHIME, HIMSS and MGMA said in a joint press release that the numbers are "disappointing, yet predictable," and reiterated their calls for CMS to offer more leniency to help address providers' widespread difficulty in meeting federal electronic health record requirements.

CMS numbers released Nov. 4 show that fewer than 17 percent of U.S. hospitals have demonstrated Stage 2 capabilities. Even worse, fewer than 38 percent of eligible hospitals and critical access hospitals have met either stage of meaningful use in 2014. The data suggest inherent difficulty in the program, and suggest that these travails will only continue in 2015, according to industry groups.

As for eligible professionals, just 2 percent have managed to meet Stage 2 so far, and it seems unlikely that very many more will have reached that threshold by the Feb. 28, 2015, attestation deadline.  "Meaningful use participation data released today have validated the concerns of providers and IT leaders," said CHIME President and CEO Russell P. Branzell, in a statement on Tuesday. "These numbers continue to underscore the need for a sensible glide-path in 2015...