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CMS accepting 2016 meaningful use hardship exceptions



March 16, 2017
Area(s) of Interest: Electronic Health Records Health Information Technology Payor Issues and Reimbursement Practice Management 

 The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that it is now accepting hardship exceptions from the meaningful use requirements of the electronic health record (EHR) incentive payment program for the 2016 reporting year. Physicians who can show that demonstrating meaningful use would result in a significant hardship can apply for a one-year exception and avoid a negative payment adjustment in 2018. The deadline to apply is July 1, 2017.


To be considered for an exemption (to avoid a payment adjustment), you must complete a hardship exception application and provide proof of the hardship. If approved, the hardship exemption is valid for one payment year. You would need to submit a new application for subsequent years.


Physicians who have never before successfully attested to meaningful use under the EHR incentive program and are transitioning in 2017 to the new Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) may also apply for a one-time hardship exception to avoid a 2018 payment adjustment.


The exception deadline for physicians transitioning to MIPS is October 1, 2017.


For more information and applications, click here.

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