CMS: Al­most $4.5 bil­lion in EHR in­cen­tive pay­ments

Modern Healthcare - - LATE NEWS -

Nearly $4.5 bil­lion in fed­eral in­cen­tives to im­ple­ment elec­tronic health-record sys­tems has been paid out thus far, with pro­gram en­roll­ments and pay­ments still in­creas­ing in the first quar­ter of 2012, ac­cord­ing to an anal­y­sis of the CMS’ lat­est data. There are now more than a quar­ter of a mil­lion (225,765) ac­tively en­rolled par­tic­i­pants in the Medi­care and Med­i­caid EHR in­cen­tive pro­grams cre­ated un­der the Amer­i­can Re­cov­ery and Rein­vest­ment Act of 2009, ac­cord­ing to the CMS. Hos­pi­tals can re­ceive pay­ments un­der both the Medi­care and the Med­i­caid pro­grams, and most do, but physi­cians and other pro­fes­sion­als can par­tic­i­pate only in one pro­gram or the other. There have been 2,667 pay­ments made to hos­pi­tals un­der the Medi­care or Med­i­caid tech­nol­ogy pro­grams, or both, to­tal­ing nearly $3.1 bil­lion. Mean­while, 222,282 el­i­gi­ble pro­fes­sion­als have en­rolled, and 73,945 have been paid. Medi­care pay­ments to 44,014 el­i­gi­ble pro­fes­sion­als have to­taled $792 mil­lion, while var­i­ous state Med­i­caid pro­grams have paid 29,931 el­i­gi­ble pro­fes­sion­als $628 mil­lion. Ac­tive reg­is­tra­tions by hos­pi­tals in­creased by 406, or 13%, in the first quar­ter of this year to 3,483 par­tic­i­pat­ing hos­pi­tals, ac­cord­ing to the CMS. Reg­is­tra­tions for el­i­gi­ble pro­fes­sion­als rose by 49,310, or nearly 29%, dur­ing the quar­ter to 222,282. Med­i­caid pro­gram en­roll­ments of el­i­gi­ble pro­fes­sion­als jumped nearly 51% as more of the late-start­ing, state-run Med­i­caid pro­grams came on­line.

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