A computerized record of a patient's clinical, demographic and administrative data. Also known as a computer-based patient record.
Sometimes people use the terms "Electronic Medical Record" or "EMR" when talking about Electronic Health Record (EHR) technology. Very often an Electronic Medical Record or EMR is just another way to describe an Electronic Health Record or EHR, and both providers and vendors sometimes use the terms interchangeably. For the purposes of the Medicare and Medicaid Incentive Programs, eligible professionals, eligible hospitals and critical access hospitals (CAHs) must use certified EHR technology. Certified EHR technology gives assurance to purchasers and other users that an EHR system or module offers the necessary technological capability, functionality, and security to help them meet the meaningful use criteria. Certification also helps providers and patients be confident that the electronic health IT products and systems they use are secure, can maintain data confidentially, and can work with other systems to share information. For more information about which EHR systems and modules are certified for the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs.
The Medicare EHR Incentive Program
- The Medicare EHR Incentive Program will provide incentive payments to eligible professionals, eligible hospitals, and CAHs that demonstrate meaningful use of certified EHR technology.
- Participation can begin as early as 2011.
- Eligible professionals can receive up to $44,000 over five years under the Medicare EHR Incentive Program. There's an additional incentive for eligible professionals who provide services in a Health Professional Shortage Area (HSPA).
- To get the maximum incentive payment, Medicare eligible professionals must begin participation by 2012.
- Incentive payments for eligible hospitals and CAHs may begin as early as 2011 and are based on a number of factors, beginning with a $2 million base payment.
- Important! For 2015 and later, Medicare eligible professionals, eligible hospitals, and CAHs that do not successfully demonstrate meaningful use will have a payment adjustment in their Medicare reimbursement.
Note: If you are a Medicare Advantage Plan (like an HMO or PPO).