Capturing Meaningful Use Incentives
The Physicians of Durham Nephrology Associates were understandably reluctant to attest. Preparing for the process seemed like an overwhelming amount of work, coming on top of already full schedules.
“We were fortunate because Allscripts gave us the tools we needed,” Dr. Cooperberg recalls. “But we still had a lot of work to do – everyone does. After all, meaningful use is not a reporting exercise. The intent is that providers will do the work of self-evaluation and improvement.”
In May 2011, the physicians attested to their Meaningful Use of Allscripts Professional EHR. The months of preparation paid off and each physician received their full 2011 incentive payment of $18,000 in June – the down payment on a four-year series of annual payments that can total $44,000.
Dr. Cooperberg advises, “This is a long-term project – it’s not something you can do in weeks or even several months. Attesting is just a start. Ultimately, your EHR is a permanent way of life – so you’d better learn how to do it now.”
He added, “If you have a vendor who fully understands the process, like Allscripts, it’s easier to get where you need to be.”