The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) set the Final Rule for EHR implementation in July of 2010. For chiropractors, this organization set aside several of the requirements that do not affect the chiropractic profession, according to the American Chiropractic Association. This allows chiropractors to achieve meaningful use requirements without much trouble and gain federal incentives.
One report cited in Healthcare IT News states that 91 percent of practitioners across the country said they were eligible to receive federal incentives in 2011. However, only 10 percent were willing to sign up for the program, according to the report. Chiropractors should not put this off any longer as they will lose Medicare reimbursements by 2015 without a certified EHR system in place.
There are specific objectives that must be met in order for a chiropractor to achieve meaningful use. The list totals 15 core objectives, of which 13 must be met, as well as 10 other menu-set items, of which four must be implemented in the chiropractic arena. Some of the menu set items include:
• Incorporating clinical laboratory results into EHR systems as part of patient records
• Sending electronic data to immunization registries through the use of certified EHR
• Sending reminders to patients for follow-up care
• Using certified EHR technology to provide patients with health-related education resources
• When transitioning patients to other care providers, the initial medical facility must grant summary care records to the new facility.
These are just some of the menu set items available for a chiropractor to achieve. Along with those items, 13 core objectives must be met. Some of the principal requirements are:
• The use of drug-allergy lists
• The use of drug-drug interaction lists
• Managing active medication lists
• Providing patients with an electronic copy of their health records
• Securing electronic patient data by implementing certified EHR systems.
In order to gain incentives, a chiropractor must first sign up for this program and also report back patient statistics at the end of every year. This includes providing which objectives were met, the necessary percentages and the total number of patients affected by meaningful use. Incentives will be given out until 2016.
Chiropractors attempting to meet meaningful use criteria would benefit from purchasing affordable chiropractic EHR software.