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Meaningful Use Monday – Meaningful Use Resources

Posted on December 27, 2010 I Written By

Lynn Scheps is Vice President, Government Affairs at EHR vendor SRSsoft. In this role, Lynn has been a Voice of Physicians and SRSsoft users in Washington during the formulation of the meaningful use criteria. Lynn is currently working to assist SRSsoft users interested in showing meaningful use and receiving the EHR incentive money.

I’m excited to announce the beginning of Meaningful Use Monday on EMR and HIPAA. I first came up with the idea when Lynn Scheps from SRSsoft commented on one of my previous meaningful use posts. Lynn provided such valuable information, I asked her if she’d be interested in becoming a regular guest blogger on EMR and HIPAA. As they say, the rest is history. Each Monday, Lynn (and sometimes myself) will be covering some topic related to the EMR Stimulus money and meaningful use. We hope you enjoy Meaningful Use Monday.
-John

With the impending start of the EHR incentive program on January 1, the results of a recent Health Data Management poll are troublesome. 72% of respondents feel that the meaningful use guidance provided by the government to-date has been either “inadequate and confusing” or “of little use,” with only 8% categorizing it as good.

It is critical to understand the requirements accurately because the regulations provide “no recourse” for providers whose attempt to demonstrate meaningful use is deemed unsuccessful. So where does a provider go for definitive information and answers to their questions?

  • The most reliable source to-date has been the CMS website and its FAQ page, but as I learned when I submitted a question, the term “FAQ” is meant quite literally: An automated response informed me that only “frequently-asked” questions are answered! So, if your question is not a common one, this source will not provide the information you seek.
  • Vendors and medical societies have offered numerous webinars and educational meetings since the legislation was passed in February 2009, but be aware that presenters have varied in their interpretations of some of the requirements.
  • Regional Extension Centers exist to assist providers, but their focus is limited to hospitals and primary care physicians, and they charge for their services. UPDATE: As has been mentioned in the comments, not all RECs charge for their services.
  • Knowledgeable consultants will be very busy and may also be costly.
  • The most promising source:  CMS has just established the EHR Information Center: 1-888-734-6433. If it operates as well as the ePrescribing and PQRI Quality/Net Help Desk, it will be a great source of information. As of the writing of this post (12/23), however, that number is answered with a recording that refers callers back to the CMS website. Hopefully, the Information Center will be live by the start of 2011.

Lynn Scheps is Vice President, Government Affairs at EMR vendor SRSsoft. In this role, Lynn has been a Voice of Physicians and SRSsoft users in Washington during the formulation of the meaningful use criteria. Lynn is currently working to assist SRSsoft users interested in showing meaningful use and receiving the EHR incentive money.

Which EMR Conferences Do You Attend?

Posted on I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

This week I finally got my flight and hotel all lined up for my trip to HIMSS. Thanks to Practice Fusion for sponsoring that part of my trip to HIMSS. It’s greatly appreciated. I think Orlando is going to be a great destination for HIMSS and the energy and excitement is going to be something else thanks to the EMR stimulus money. It should be a pretty exciting event with far too many people, sessions and vendors to take in.

I’m still considering throwing together a New Media Meetup at HIMSS like I did last year. It was a lot of fun and worked out well since we just partnered with MEDecision to pull it off. If you’re interested in helping put something like that together or attending an event like that, let me know and I’ll be sure to let you know the details. I personally really like these sorts of intimate meetings with interesting people who understand New Media like blogs, twitter, Facebook, etc.

What other conferences do people attend? I’ve been to a number of different EMR events this last year. The Mobile Health Expo was a fun event and should get better as it grows. I really enjoyed mixing it up with all the doctors at AAFP (even if I did get kicked out of a session since I wasn’t a doctor).

I’d wanted to go to MGMA this year, but couldn’t quite swing it. The good thing is that the 2011 MGMA Annual Conference is in Las Vegas (my backyard) and so I can easily attend while still enjoying my own bed. HIMSS 2012 is also going to be in Las Vegas which is very convenient for me. Obviously, you can see I have a bit of a bias to EMR or healthcare IT related conferences in Las Vegas. It’s just so much nicer and luckily a fair amount of them come to Las Vegas.

I heard there’s going to be a healthcare portion of SXSW in Austin. That’s a conference I’ve always wanted to go to. Health 2.0 could also be interesting, but I find it much more consumer health app focused than EMR and doctor focused.

Are there any other EMR related conferences that I should keep my eye on?