As part of the Stimulus package, non hospital based Physicians can receive up to $44,000 in incentives if they are able to demonstrate “meaningful use” of an electronic health record (EHR) by 2011. Incentives are based on a Physician’s Medicare and Medicaid charges and are capped based on when the Physician is a meaningful user of an EHR.
Overall, if Physicians demonstrate meaningful use by 2011, they can maximize the incentive program and receive the full $44,000. For each year that goes by without meaningful use, incentive quantities are reduced and eventually a Physician’s Medicare payment rates will be reduced if meaningful use is not demonstrated by 2015. For example, if a physician does not demonstrate meaningful use by 2015 their Medicare payments will be reduced by 1%. If not by 2016, their Medicare payments may be reduced by 2% and possibly so on (as years post 2016 have not been outlined).
Below is a summary of how incentives can be maximized if meaningful use is demonstrated in a given year:
Payment Year Incentive
First Payment Year
$18,000 if the first payment year is 2011 or 2012
$15,000 if the first payment year is 2013
$12,000 if the first payment year is 2014
Second Payment Year $12,000
Third Payment Year $8,000
Fourth Payment Year $4,000
Fifth Payment Year $2,000
The funding outlined above has been summarized by HIMSS and does not include additional opportunities which may be made available by the States through grants and loans.
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