eRx Incentive Program Sees Changes in Final Rule

CMS Releases Final Rule on eRx Incentives

Back in June, Jim reported about the eRx and the EHR Incentive programs in his post Catch-22 in the two eRx Incentive Programs. The Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008 (MIPPA) required an adjustment to payments, beginning in 2012 and CMS requested comments to better align the eRx and EHR programs. The comments are all in and CMS has released its final rule on the changes to the Electronic Prescribing (eRx) Incentive Program.

Here are the comments considered and how they were addressed:

  • Qualified e-prescribing includes certified EHR technology under the EHR Incentive programs.
  • Four additional hardship exemptions for providers from the 2012 payment adjustment:
    • registered participants in any of the CMS EHR Incentive Programs and adopt certified EHR technology;
    • EP unable to electronically prescribe due to local, state, or federal law or regulation;
    • EPs who have limited prescribing activity; and
    • EPs who have insufficient opportunities to report the e-prescribing measure due to limitations of the measure’s denominator.
  • Extension of the deadline for requesting significant hardship exemptions to November 1, 2011.
  • EPs are allowed to report hardship exemptions online and group practices are allowed to report via a mailed letter.

For detailed information on the CMS eRx Incentive Program, visit their web site. You can also find more information on the final rule in the CMS Blog post, Greater Flexibility in e-Prescribing Means Greater Success.