Meaningful Use Stage 3 comment period closing; GAO appoints three new members to HIT Policy Committee;

News From Around the Web

> The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has announced the appointment of three new members to ONC's Health IT Policy Committee. They are Kathleen Blake, M.D., who will fill the position of an expert in healthcare quality measurement and reporting; Donna Cryer, J.D., who will fill the position of an advocate for patients or consumers; and Brent Snyder, Esq., who will fill the position of a representative of healthcare providers. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which created the Committee (and the Meaningful Use program) requires the GAO to appoint 13 out of the 20 members on the Committee. Announcement

> The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has issued a news alert reminding the public that there's still time to comment on the proposed rules regarding the Meaningful Use program. The deadline for submitting comments on the proposed rules implementing Stage 3 and the certification of EHR technology for the 2015 edition are due May 29. The comments on the modifications to Meaningful Use for 2015-2017 are due June 15. Comments can be submitted electronically, by mail, express or overnight delivery, by hand or by courier. Website

Health Finance News

> Has the feverish level of mergers and acquisitions within the hospital sector created unbearable pressures to raise the overall price of healthcare? The answer to that question is yes. Article

> The American Hospital Association has undertaken its first major legislative campaign to put Recovery Audit Contractors in what it believes is their correct place.  The trade association supports a bill in Congress that would significantly change the way RACs conduct business. Article

Health Insurance News   

> Iowa, New Mexico and nearly a dozen other states now offer incentives to Medicaid beneficiaries to help them make healthier decisions and, in turn, save the program money. However, because a majority of Medicaid beneficiaries are more likely to smoke and less likely to access preventive care, enticing them to participate in incentive programs can be challenging. Article

> Of $360 million in Medicare fee-for-service payments in 2013, 42 percent were value-based, according to an independent scorecard from nonprofit Catalyst for Payment Reform (CPR). CPR used a multi-stakeholder advisory committee back in August 2014 to analyze results from 2013. Article

And Finally... What about the emotional distress of the person finding it? Article