Congress Preparing to Ask CMS to Delay MU Stage 3

Congress Preparing to Ask CMS to Delay MU Stage 3August 26, 2015 by Vickie Anenberg

The Senate health committee is now likely to ask the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) to delay issuing the final rule on Meaningful Use (MU) Stage 3, which is due to be released within a few weeks. It appears that Congress prefers the delay be accomplished through a ruling in-lieu of legislation.

Cross Country Staffing notes that most of the incentive funds earmarked for providers who implement EHRs and attest to the first two stages of MU have already been spent. But CMS is preparing to impose penalties on facilities that do not achieve meaningful use with their systems, and this is compounding the challenges Congress is facing with its efforts to mandate EHR interoperability.

According to an article posted by HealthLeaders Media, the Senate health committee, chaired by Senator Lamar Alexander, will ask for the delay “to allow the panel time to submit recommendations on the (MU) incentive program.” This is a perplexing problem for healthcare facilities, because there is no indication as to how long the delay may be, if CMS will then delay MU penalties for the same period, or what the EHR interoperability requirements might entail.

At the same time, facilities are having to cope with an influx of patients due to the Affordable Care Act, HCAHPS scores that can jeopardize their rate of Medicare reimbursement, and the ongoing shortage of qualified clinicians such as nurses, as well as healthcare IT staff. Remaining financially viable in the highly competitive healthcare provider marketplace has never been more difficult to manage.

However, Cross Country Staffing is prepared to help. Based upon our more than 35 years of healthcare staffing experience, we have developed a series of scalable, comprehensive workforce solutions that are proven to cost-effectively meet current and future staffing challenges by anticipating the needs of our provider partners. These solutions include analysis, our exclusive Managed Services Provider program for professional healthcare staffing, and an EHR/EMR program to solve supplemental IT staffing challenges for system upgrades or new system implementation.

Talk with a Cross Country Staffing representative about how we can provide your facility with the tools and professional services that will streamline your staffing processes to give your organization a competitive edge.