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EHR Payment Incentives for Providers Ineligible for Payment Incentives and Other Funding Study

Publication Date

This study was conducted in response to a requirement in the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH Act) which directs the Secretary to examine certain issues and determine the extent to which and manner in which payment incentives and other funding for implementing and using certified EHR technology should be made available to health care providers who are receiving minimal or no payment incentives for the use of such technology. The study identified these health care providers as “ineligible providers” and organized them into four clusters: Long-Term and Post-Acute Care (LTPAC); Behavioral Health; Safety Net; and Other, and found that funding to most of these providers for the use of such technology is not expected to support widespread adoption and use of EHR technologies. Ineligible providers deliver health care to some of the most vulnerable and costly individuals in our society, and the care they deliver would benefit from the use of EHR technology, including electronic health information exchange. EHR implementation by ineligible providers lags behind that of health care providers eligible for the EHR Incentive Programs. The study identified options proposed or implemented by various stakeholders to provide direct and/or indirect support to ineligible providers to support their acquisition and use of EHR technology. Activities are underway to fill gaps in health IT standards to support the interoperable exchange of documents at times of transitions in care and during instances of shared care. The study found that strategic planning and coordination across programs is needed to support: implementation of EHR technologies by these providers, the nationwide health IT infrastructure, and the EHR Incentive Programs; and realization of quality goals in the National Quality Strategy and health service transformation. [88 PDF pages, Main Report; 491 PDF pages, Full Report]