For many physicians, being “measured” is a new paradigm. The days of providing quality healthcare and focusing just on patient outcomes within the four walls of your medical office are over. If the government is an important payer in your practice, then how you get paid is now inexorably linked to participating in programs that “measure” your practice performance.

For the EHR Meaningful Use incentive program, there are 25 measures. All eligible providers (EPs) must report on 15 “core” measures (in this case, the word “core” means that the provider may not opt out of any of the core measures). In addition, EPs must choose 5 of the 10 menu measures to report on. It’s easy: there are 25 measures, and EPs must report on the 15 core measures plus 5 menu measures for a total of 20 measures. Within MediTouch EHR®, HealthFusion offers a Meaningful Use Report Card® that helps your practice understand each measure and how each provider “scored” when compared with the measures’ threshold.

Let’s recap. MediTouch® will help you keep score. Our EHR will guide you and score each measure that MediTouch is able to track for you. You will have enough data to report 20 of the 25 measures upon the conclusion of your 90 day (2011) reporting period.

Now, let’s focus on one of the 15 Meaningful Use core measures. The measure calls for creating (not reporting in 2011) a quality file. Guess what? The quality file has its own set of measures. Within the MediTouch application, users are prompted to choose from the approved core/alternate core measures and menu measures. The file must be created by MediTouch to include 6 quality measures (3 of the 6 core/alternate core measures and 3 menu measures).

Do you have a headache yet?

Wait, it gets simpler. After you choose your 6 measures, MediTouch does all of the work for you. We will track those measures for you and create a Meaningful Use quality file. After the file is created, guess where it goes? In 2011, the file goes nowhere. It stays in the system. You may be wondering, “Do the values within the file impact my incentive payment?” The answer is no.

Let’s recap again:

  1. When it comes time to claim your EHR incentive program payment from CMS, the MediTouch report card will guide you as to how you “score” on each Meaningful use measure and which of menu measures you should report.
  2. One of the core EHR Meaningful Use measures requires the creation (but not the submission in 2011) of a quality file that includes 6 measures. MediTouch will automatically create that file for you. No extra work!

You may be wondering about PQRI measures and PQRI reporting… I will blog on that in early 2011. Nothing is simple in the world of healthcare, but the MediTouch team is working hard to make reporting measures related to incentive payment simple.