With attestation for 2011 electronic health records meaningful use incentive payments starting in early April, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is showing computer screen shots of the attestation pages during HIMSS11 in Orlando.

The screens appear to be laid out well and quite easy to understand. A few tips:

* Screens for measures that require entering a numerator and denominator in boxes initially will not automatically compute and display the percentage of compliance with the specified measure, but that is a capability that CMS later will add.

* Uses will only get screens of the menu set objectives they choose to report on.

* Only after submitting the attestation will a user get a screen showing which of the objectives were accepted and which were rejected, with percentages of compliance showing for the applicable measures. The next page enables editing of any rejected objective to fix errors. If an objective that includes a numerator and denominator was rejected because the compliance percentage was not achieved, a user can enter a numerator and denominator from a different reporting period and try again. This editing feature means users will not have to start the attestation process over.

* Hospitals will receive an interim incentive payment based on their 2010 Medicare claims submissions. After February 2012, CMS will reconcile the interim payment, so the final payment could go up or down.

More news from the show is at http://www.healthdatamanagement.com/himss

--Joseph Goedert


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