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Michael S. Barr, MD, MBA, FACP

Former Senior Vice President, Division of Medical Practice, Professionalism & Quality, American College of Physicians

In case you missed it, Congress passed legislation this week to “patch” the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula and delay ICD10 for another year. The process used by the House to pass the bill (voice vote; no accountability) was the subject of several articles. Government HealthIT Editor Tom Sullivan called it the “dark side” of…

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Road to 10: Free Online Resource for Small Clinical Practices CMS released Road to 10, a free online resource built with the help of physicians in small practices. Available on the Provider Resources page at cms.gov/ICD10, this tool is intended to help small medical practices jumpstart their ICD-10 transition. Road to 10 gives providers the…

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eHealth University, A Go-To Resource for eHealth Programs CMS launched eHealth University, a new resource that helps providers find information and materials on each of the

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Reminder: Medicare Eligible Professionals Must Attest by March 31 at 11:59 pm ET to Receive 2013 Incentive Providers should submit data as soon as possible and during non-peak hours to avoid system delays. The last day eligible professionals can register and attest to demonstrating meaningful use for the 2013 reporting year of the Medicare EHR…

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The following information was provided by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and is reproduced here in its entirety: Eligible professionals and eligible hospitals that are unable to implement EHR technology certified to the 2014 edition criteria in time to successfully demonstrate meaningful use for the 2014 reporting year may be eligible for a…

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Last month, ONC released a series of guides to help promote safe EHR practices. Nine guides, collectively referred to as, “Safety Assurance Factors for EHR Resilience” or SAFER Guides cover several important topics. The introductory video explains the rationale behind developing the guides. The SAFER Guides are self-assessment tools to help guide your practice to…

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Those of you still working on reporting for 2013 Meaningful Use have a few more days. CMS announced that the deadline has been extended from 2/28 to 11:59 pm on 3/31/14. Note, however, that all data must have been collected during the reporting period which ended December 31, 2013. Eligible professionals must attest for 2013…

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An article by Andrew Pollack in the New York Times yesterday entitled, “Roughed Up By an Orca? There’s a Code for That” highlights some of the issues that have been discussed for awhile about ICD-10 conversion. The current deadline for conversion is still October 1, 2014 – which gives health systems, private practices and everything…

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) published companion final rules (CMS; OIG) on Friday, December 27th that extends the Stark Law exception to allow hospitals to donate EHRs to physicians and avoid the anti-kickback enforcement as long as 15% of the cost is covered by…

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After an ONC representative indicated that changes were unlikely for the EHR Incentive Program (aka Meaningful Use timeline), the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) posted an announcement on Friday afternoon (12/6). Robert Tagalicod (Office of E-Health Standards & Services at CMS) and Jacob Reider (Acting…

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I am posting this message from CMS about ICD-10 as it identifies several potentially important resources for those practices still working towards the ICD-10 deadline (which likely means everyone): The ICD-10 compliance date is less than a year away! The October 1, 2014 transition from ICD-9 to ICD-10 codes will affect all entities covered by…

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