There is much in the proposed Stage 2 meaningful use criteria that the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation likes. But when it comes to patient engagement, the health care philanthropy and research firm wants the criteria enhanced.
Proposed criteria for eligible professionals, for instance, would require providing clinical summaries for patients within 24 hours of an office visit. The foundation in a comment letter to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services suggests the measure require an electronic clinical summary.
Another proposed objective would require more than 10 percent of unique patients who had an office visit within 24 months be sent a reminder for preventive or follow-up care. Under Stage 1 this requirement is 20 percent but only covers the elderly and children five years of age or younger. So the percentage is cut in half but the objective would cover all unique patients.
RWJ Foundation in its comment letter advocates leaving the threshold at 20 percent even as the patient population greatly expands. “Once an organization has the capacity to produce patient reminders, expanding the degree to which they are used to 20 percent should not be unduly burdensome.”
The foundation also urges that CMS raise the 10 percent threshold of patients actually viewing, downloading or transmitting their health information to 20 percent. “This change would provide an incentive to health professionals to adopt patient-facing platforms that have the potential to increase patient engagement and self-care.” The organization also recommends cutting the time period for enabling access from four business days to 24 hours after the information is available to eligible professionals.
The foundation’s comment letter is available here.
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