AMA, CHIME want to fix meaningful use based on these 11 recommendations

It's no secret certain stakeholders are unhappy about the state of meaningful use and the impending stage 3 requirements. In two new letters to CMS, the American Medical Association and CHIME have laid out recommendations for how the program can be improved.

Here are six recommendations for overarching changes that, if adopted immediately, would improve Stage 3 for patients and physicians from the AMA's letter to CMS:

1. Provide flexibility and eliminate a pass-fail program design;
2. Allow for multiple methods/paths to achieve desired end goals;
3. Remove threshold requirements for measures outside of the physician's control;
4. Re-orient measures away from process-based tasks to highlight goals that are useful to patients and physicians;
5. Encourage new technology functions to be the focus of certification rather than placing requirements on physicians and patients that may not yet be feasible; and
6. Support the reuse of data to reduce the burden on documentation.

Here are five CHIME recommendations to improve Stage 3 from the organization's letter to CMS:

1. Require providers start Stage 3 no earlier than 2019 and only after 75 percent of all eligible providers have met Stage 2.
2. Remove the 2017 transitional year for meeting Meaningful Use Stage 3 and require 2015 Edition Certified Electronic Health Record Technology no earlier than 2018.
3. Create the option of a 90-day reporting period for all future years of the program to include, at the very least, the first year at Stage 3 and any other years where a provider deems it necessary for implementing upgrades, planned downtime, fixes related to technology or optimizing the use of new technology within workflows.
4. Create parity for both eligible providers and eligible hospitals by removing the existing pass/fail approach for Meaningful Use.
5. Continue to work to reduce the burden for providers by streamlining reporting redundancies and refrain from requiring data collection and submission on measures that do not advance patient care.

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