The American Medical Association (AMA) approved a new policy urging the calling for Meaningful Use penalties to be halted. The AMA has joined other healthcare leaders and policymakers in urging CMS to to add more flexibility to the Meaningful Use program and shorten the reporting period to help physicians avoid penalties. According to new attestation numbers, only 2 percent of physicians have successfully demonstrated MU Stage 2 requirements.
“The AMA has been calling for policymakers to refocus the Meaningful Use program on interoperability for quite some time,” said AMA President-elect Steven J. Stack, M.D in an official statement. “The whole point of the Meaningful Use incentive program was to allow for the secure exchange of information across settings and providers and right now that type of sharing and coordination is not happening on a wide scale for reasons outside physicians’ control. Physicians want to improve the quality of care and usable, interoperable electronic health records are a pathway to achieving that goal.”
Interoperability Comes At A Price
The AMA states that interoperability comes at a steep price due to the lack of EHR data integration and sharing. Providers are often left struggling to digest the data in a meaningful way. In addition to the call for improved EHR interoperablity, physicians are also urging policymakers to ease regulations to allow EHRs to become more usable.
Last month, the AMA released a blueprint for the future of the Meaningful Use program, including Stage 3, quality reporting, and EHR vendor certification requirements. The outlined eight priorities for more usable EHRs. Physicians want to use high-performing, interoperable technology in a way they best see fit to help them care for their patients. Modifying the Meaningful Use program will help to meet these goals.