Wednesday, May 2, 2012
This Week's News
This Week's News
Only 11 percent of doctors ready to apply for EHR incentive, study finds
A new survey has found that many physicians intended to apply for financial incentives available through the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' (CMS) electronic health record (EHR) program, but only a fraction had the ability to fulfill the program's requirements. The survey was published in the April issue of Health Affairs.
While the survey found that the number of physicians planning to apply for the EHR incentive rose to 51 percent last year—up from 41 percent in 2010—only 11 percent of all physicians both intended to apply for the incentive and had the technological capabilities to meet the program's "meaningful use" requirements. Of those who planned to apply for the incentive but were not yet ready, 43 percent indicated that they planned to install a new EHR system within the next 18 months.
Conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics and sponsored by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, the survey consisted of an analysis of nearly 4,000 office-based physicians.
Physicians can prepare to select, implement and maintain EHR systems with help from numerous AMA resources, and detailed explanations about qualifying for CMS's EHR incentive program also are available. The earlier physicians meet the program requirements, the greater the incentive payment for which they can qualify. To date, 61,865 physicians have received payments totaling nearly $1.18 billion.