On Friday, CMS CIO Julie Boughn said the agency is in the final stages of testing electronic systems that will manage incentive payments for health care providers who participate in the federal government's "meaningful use" program, Government Health IT reports.
Under the 2009 federal economic stimulus package, health care providers who demonstrate meaningful use of certified electronic health records can qualify for incentive payments through Medicaid and Medicare.
Health care providers seeking to obtain the incentive payments will need to register through CMS' Provider Enrollment, Chain and Ownership System, which is available from a CMS website. The electronic system allows the agency to track and validate health care providers and suppliers who participate in Medicare.
When health care providers are ready to demonstrate their compliance with the meaningful use requirements, they will need to complete CMS' attestation module. Boughn said the module will ask the health care providers to describe how they met the requirements and to submit some clinical quality measures.
CMS plans to open registration for the incentive program in early January 2011.
In April 2011, health care providers can begin completing the attestation module for meaningful use. Eligible health care providers are expected to start receiving incentive payments in May 2011.
According to Boughn, CMS plans to update its electronic registration and attestation systems over the next several years to align with forthcoming meaningful use standards (Mosquera, Government Health IT, 11/5).