What is "Meaningful Use"?

The United States Government, through the enactment of The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), has authorized the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to provide reimbursement incentives for eligible professionals who are successful in becoming "meaningful users" of certified electronic health record (EHR) technology. The law includes the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act, or the "HITECH Act," which established incentive programs under CMS. CMS established the criteria and reporting requirements, which eligible professionals follow to prove meaningful use of their adopted Electronic Health Record technology.

    1. Stage 1 sets the baseline for electronic data capture and information sharing.

    2. Stage 2 expands the requirements of Stage 1 focusing on information sharing.

    3. Stage 3 (expected to be implemented in 2016/2017) will continue to expand on this baseline and be developed through future rule making.

"Meaningful Use" means providers need to demonstrate that they are using certified EHR/EMR technology in ways that can be measured significantly in quality and in quantity. From 2011 to 2015 Medicare eligible providers could earn up to 44000.00 in incentives if they successfully attested to Meaningful Use over 5 consecutive years and Medicaid eligible providers can still earn up to $63,750 if successful in attesting to Meaningful use regardless of the year started from 2011 through 2016. Payments can span over 6 years and does not have to be consecutive like the Medicare eligible providers program.

For the lasted information about the CMS Meaningful programs, click here: CMS Meaningful Use