House Members Request Change in 2015 EHR Reporting Period


29 Republican House members have signed a protest to have HHS Secretary Sylvia Matthews Burwell reduce the 2015 reporting period from a full year to 90 days for the federal electronic health records incentive payment program.

The CMS has required providers aiming to achieve meaningful use in the first year of the program stage to attest to having met the initiative’s requirements for 90 days. The period increases to 365 days of meaningful use for providers in the second year of a program stage. The result of changing the reporting period would offer providers more time to properly implement the technology and enhance their journey to meaningful use.

The CMS reported that more than 250,000 healthcare professionals will have their 2015 Medicare payments cut by 1% due to failure of use of EHRs at the Stage 1 level of meaningful use. Similarly, more than 200 hospitals will also have a 1% reduction of Medicare payments for failing to meet stage 1 of the meaningful use goal.

According to an analysis of a CMS report, approximately 2,500 hospitals and 168,000 physicians had met Stage 1 requirements in 2011 and 2012, which means these groups needed to meet Stage 2 requirements in 2014. 67% of the hospitals on track to meet Stage 2 requirements had done so by Dec. 1, meanwhile only 10% of physicians had achieved this goal by Dec. 1. Nonetheless, both hospitals and physicians have until the end of Feb. to attest, so these percentages will likely rise.

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