The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services soon expects to publish a final rule making changes to Medicare's Electronic Prescribing Incentive Program.

CMS has sent the rule for review to the Office of Management and Budget, one of the last steps before publication in the Federal Register.

In a proposed rule published on June 1, CMS said the changes are designed to better align the eRX Incentive program with the electronic health record meaningful use incentive program. The eRX Incentive program has its own quality measure to determine whether an eligible professional is using a "qualified" electronic prescribing system that performs four specific functions. The program does not require certification of the system.

Under the proposed rule, EHRs that have received meaningful use certification would be deemed to qualify for the eRX Incentive program by expanding the definition of a qualified e-prescribing system. The proposed rule also called for additional opportunities to providers to get a "hardship exemption."


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