Stage 2 attestations have lagged, as we have reported, with a total of 972 physicians and 10 hospitals attesting to Meaningful Use Stage 2 through the end of June, according to an update from CMS. The numbers of attesting providers nearly doubled since the end of May, when 447 providers and 8 hospitals had attested, but the numbers still reflect a tiny percentage of potentially eligible providers and hospitals.
In an update presented by CMS on July 8, officials said that the total of 2,823 professionals who had attested stage 1 or stage 2 by the end of June represents only about 1 percent of those eligible, and the 128 total hospitals represent 3 percent of eligible hospitals.
Nowhere to go but up
Of course, with the proposed rule CMS published on May 20, the number of attestations should grow quickly, since the requirements have been loosened. This trend is also in line with last year; ONC official Jennifer King presented information showing that for 2011-2013, the vast majority of attestations occurred in the last two quarters of the year. And since the proposed rule has not yet been approved, some providers may be waiting to see the final version of the rule.
We had pointed out in an earlier blog post that “Since there may not be enough time for the law to be passed by July 1, most providers that were slated to be Stage 2 attesters this year will want to wait until the rule is official.” This seems to be the approach the majority of providers are taking.
Why are cloud-based EHRs the majority of successful attestations?
Obviously, there must be a reason why server-based EHRs are failing in the Meaningful Use arena; they have been in use longer than cloud-based, so they have had a longer window to achieve success with physicians’ needs. However, these results lead us to believe that cloud-based EHRs are more nimble, and better able to adapt to the needs of the marketplace. Server-based EHRs are not updated in real time as cloud-based EHRs are, which leads to delays in providing the tools practices need for Meaningful Use.
The fact that the majority of Stage 2 attestations have been achieved with cloud-based EHRs supports what has been evident in the marketplace for some time: Providers are finding that cloud-based EHRs better support their practices, due to:
- Frequent updates
- Free updates
- Easier to update than server-based software
- Access from anywhere
- And more
When you are choosing an EMR, look for one that will make your Meaningful Use attestation easier, not harder. Be sure to choose a cloud-based EMR software that is already MU 2014 certified, as this will be required for your 2015 attestation. You should also look for software that provides daily updates on your Meaningful Use progress, as you will find with MediTouch®’s Meaningful Use Report Card®.
Also, be sure to choose EMR software that other providers have successfully used to attest for Meaningful Use. Only a few EHR vendors have seen their customers attest for Stage 2 in 2014.
We are pleased to say that MediTouch meets all of these criteria. We are ready to help you successfully attest for Meaningful Use in 2014, 2015 and beyond.
For more information on achieving successful Meaningful Use attestation, download our free Insider’s Guide to Meaningful Use and PQRS—just click on the banner below.