AHA to CMS: Make the EHR Incentive Program more flexible

In a Friday letter to CMS, the American Hospital Association urged revisions to the EHR Incentive Program framework reflect flexibility, citing the need for a delay in new requirements and the lack of adequate health information exchange standards and infrastructure.

"To reach the goal of EHR adoption and use across a sizeable majority of eligible hospitals, critical access hospitals and eligible professionals, the EHR Incentive Program framework and timeframe must be reoriented to provide operational and strategic flexibility for participating providers to enable them to achieve our shared national vision of an e-enabled healthcare system," Tom Nickels, AHA executive vice president, wrote in the letter.

Mr. Nickels' letter includes specific recommendations for improving the incentive program's structure, making it more flexible and basing meaningful use requirements on more realistic standards.

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