Hardship-Exemption

Deadline to Submit Hardship Exemptions to Avoid the 2012 e-Rx Penalty Extended

The deadline to submit a hardship exemption for the 2012 penalty was November 1, 2011. Due to technical issues at CMS, this deadline has been extended to November 8, 2011. As noted last week in Four Days Left to Submit an Exemption for the e-Rx Penalty, the exemptions for the 2012 penalty are as follows:

  • Individuals who registered to participate in the Medicare or Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs for 2011 and have adopted Certified EHR technology.
  • This exemption does require that you attest to being a meaningful user in 2011. You will need to provide your registration ID number as well as the certification number of your EHR. You can look up your EHR’s certification number at http://onc-chpl.force.com/ehrcert.
  • Individuals who were unable to electronically prescribe due to local, state, or Federal law and/or regulation (e.g. prescriptions for controlled substances).
  • Individuals who had limited prescribing activity, while still having prescribing privileges (e.g. an EP that prescribed fewer than 10 prescriptions between January 1, 2011 and June 30, 2011).
  • Individuals who had insufficient opportunities to report the electronic prescribing measure due to limitations of the measure’s denominator (e.g. physicians, such as many surgeons, who do not normally write prescriptions associated with the type of visits included in the e-Rx measure).
  • Individuals who practice in a rural area without sufficient high speed Internet access.
  • Individuals who practice in an area without sufficient available pharmacies for electronic prescribing.

Eligible professionals can request the significant hardship exemption by completing the form located at https://www.qualitynet.org/portal/server.pt/community/communications_support_system/234. Only the eligible professional (e.g. the prescriber) can submit the exemption request.

If you have problems with accessing the page please follow the steps listed below.

  1. In the Internet browser, select Tools/Internet Options/Advanced.
  2. Scroll down toward the bottom and locate the “Use TLS 1.0” choice.
  3. Place a checkmark in the “Use TLS 1.0.”
  4. Click the “OK” box.
  5. Attempt to access the site again.

If you still experience trouble accessing the site, please contact the QualityNet help desk between 7:00 am – 7:00 pm CST Phone: 1-866-288-8912 TTY: 1-877-715-6222 Email: Qnetsupport@sdps.org

Additionally, CMS released the Physician Fee Schedule yesterday in which they finalize the requirements needed to avoid the 2013 and 2014 e-prescribing penalty and to earn the 2012 and 2013 e-prescribing incentive payment. Below are the reporting options you have available to avoid these penalties.

The following exemptions apply to the 2013 and 2014 penalties (note registering for Meaningful Use is no longer a qualifying exemption):

  • The eligible professional or group practice practices in a rural area with limited high speed Internet access.
  • The eligible professional or group practice practices in an area with limited available pharmacies for electronic prescribing.
  • Inability to electronically prescribe due to local, state, or Federal law or regulation.
  • Eligible professionals who prescribe fewer than 100 prescriptions during a six-month period.

As with the 2012 Penalty you will be able to submit an exemption request at https://www.qualitynet.org/portal/server.pt/community/communications_support_system/234.

As in 2012, if you believe that more than one significant hardship exemption category applies to your practice, you must request a significant hardship exemption under at least one significant hardship exemption category. However, the eligible professional may indicate that more than one significant hardship exemption category applies to his or her practice in the eligible professional’s justification statement.

Below are the requirements to qualify for the 2012 incentive payment:

Comments:

2 responses to "Deadline to Submit Hardship Exemptions to Avoid the 2012 e-Rx Penalty Extended"
  • November 10, 2011
    John Umekubo, M.D.
    said:

    If you are registered to participate in the Medicare or Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs for 2011 and have adopted Certified EHR technology and submit the necessary number of claims in 2012, you are not eligible for the 2012 e prescribing incentive payment. There is no double dipping

    • November 10, 2011
      William S. Underwood MPH
      said:

      You are basically correct if you attest as a meaningful user for the Medicare Medicaid EHR Incentive Program you can not receive the e-Rx incentive payment. However, if you do not report successfully on your e-prescribing activity (outside of MU attestation) you may be subjected to the payment penalty for failing to e-prescribe.

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