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Feb 6 -- The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) invites comment to OMB by March 11, 2024 regarding the proposed revision of the Medicare Promoting Interoperability Program. [Comments due 30 days after submission to OMB on February 8.]

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is requesting approval to collect information from eligible hospitals and critical access hospitals (CAHs). We have finalized changes to this program as discussed in the FY 2024 Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS)/Long-term Care Hospital Prospective Payment System (LTCH PPS) final rule. This is a revision of the information collection request.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act) (Pub. L. 111–5) was enacted on February 17, 2009. Title IV of division B of the Recovery Act amended titles XVIII and XIX of the Social Security Act (the Act) by establishing incentive payments to eligible professionals (EPs), eligible hospitals and CAHs, and Medicare Advantage (MA) organizations participating in the Medicare and Medicaid programs that adopt and successfully demonstrate meaningful use of certified EHR technology (CEHRT). These Recovery Act provisions, together with title XIII of division A of the Recovery Act, may be cited as the “Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act” or the “HITECH Act.”

The HITECH Act created incentive programs for EPs, eligible hospitals including CAHs, and MA organizations in the Medicare Fee-for-Service (FFS), and Medicaid programs that successfully demonstrated meaningful use of CEHRT. In their first payment year, Medicaid EPs, eligible hospitals including MA organizations and CAHs could adopt, implement, or upgrade to certified EHR technology. It also allowed for negative payment adjustments in the Medicare FFS and MA programs starting in 2015 for EPs, eligible hospitals including MA organizations and CAHs participating in Medicare that are not meaningful users of CEHRT. The Medicaid Promoting Interoperability Program did not authorize negative payment adjustments, but its participants were eligible for incentive payments until December 31, 2021, when the program ended.

In CY 2017, we began collecting data from eligible hospitals and CAHs to determine the application of the Medicare payment adjustments. This information collection was also used to make incentive payments to eligible hospitals in Puerto Rico from 2016 through 2021. At this time, Medicare eligible professionals no longer reported to the EHR Incentive Program, as they began reporting under the Merit-based Incentive Payment System's (MIPS) Promoting Interoperability Performance Category. In 2019, the EHR Incentives Program for eligible hospitals and CAHs was subsequently renamed the Medicare Promoting Interoperability Program. In subsequent years, we have focused on balancing reporting burden for eligible hospitals and CAHs while also implementing changes designed to incentivize the advanced use of CEHRT to support health information exchange, interoperability, advanced quality measurement, and maximizing clinical effectiveness and efficiencies.

In the FY 2024 IPPS/LTCH PPS final rule, we finalized the following policy changes for eligible hospitals and CAHs that attest to CMS under the Medicare Promoting Interoperability Program. None of the policies we finalized will affect the information collection burden: (i) to adopt three electronic clinical quality measures (eCQMs) beginning with the CY 2025 reporting period: (1) Hospital Harm—Pressure Injury eCQM; (2) Hospital Harm—Acute Kidney Injury eCQM; and (3) Excessive Radiation Dose or Inadequate Image Quality for Diagnostic Computed Tomography (CMT) in Adults eCQM; (ii) to modify the Safety Assurance Factors for EHR Resilience (SAFER) Guides measure to require eligible hospitals and CAHs to submit a “yes” attestation to fulfill the measure beginning with the EHR reporting period in CY 2024; and (iii) to establish an EHR reporting period of a minimum of any continuous 180-day period in CY 2025.

CMS Promoting Interoperability Program: https://www.cms.gov/medicare/regulations-guidance/promoting-interoperability-programs
CMS submission to OMB: https://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAViewICR?ref_nbr=202402-0938-001 Click IC List for information collection instrument, View Supporting Statement for technical documentation. Submit comments through this webpage.
FRN: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2024-02306

For AEA members wishing to submit comments, "A Primer on How to Respond to Calls for Comment on Federal Data Collections" is available at https://www.aeaweb.org/content/file?id=5806

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