Meaningful Use payment volume steadily increasing

Preliminary data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services show attestations and payments for Meaningful Use of electronic health records, while off to a slow start, are starting to increase in volume.

Through July 31, 2,383 physicians and other eligible professionals had attested to meeting Meaningful Use requirements under the Medicare program, and 1,078 had received incentive payments, according to figures that CMS supplied to FierceHealthIT. One-hundred hospitals attested through July, and 66 received payments.

Under the Medicaid programs now operating in 23 states, CMS had paid incentives to 3,334 EPs and 199 hospitals through July 31.

Far more providers have received payments under Medicaid than under Medicare, CMS officials explained, partly because the Medicaid payments began in January in some states. In contrast, providers seeking Medicare incentives couldn't attest until April, and payments to them started going out in May. Also, providers don't have to attest to Meaningful Use in the first year of Medicaid incentive payments.

In total, CMS payouts under the Meaningful Use program are just under $400 million for the year to date.

The numbers of providers that registered for the Meaningful Use program were far higher than those getting payments. Through the end of July, 77,549 providers registered, including 75,720 EPs and 1,829 hospitals.

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