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CMS Answers FAQ on EHR Incentive Program Hardship Exceptions

Providers submitting hardship exceptions for meaningful use attestation may still attest and potentially receive EHR incentive payments.

By Sara Heath

- The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released another frequently asked question regarding hardship exception submittal in the EHR Incentive Programs.

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services CMS Logo

The agency explains that providers may submit a hardship exception and still attest to 2015 meaningful use and potentially still receive an EHR incentive payment.

Meaningful use attestation for the 2015 reporting period is presently open, and will be open until March 11, 2016. All successful meaningful use attestations will avoid the 2017 payment adjustment and may also be eligible for EHR incentive payments.

If a provider does not believe he or she will be able to successfully attest to the 2015 reporting period for meaningful use, she may submit a hardship exception. In the event that the meaningful use attestation is indeed successful, that provider will avoid the 2017 payment adjustment and be eligible for EHR incentive payments.

If the meaningful use attestation is unsuccessful, the provider still has submitted a hardship exception, allowing her to still avoid the 2017 payment adjustment.

Eligible professionals must submit meaningful use hardship exceptions by March 15, 2016, and eligible hospitals and critical access hospitals must submit them by April 1, 2016.

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