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WY hospital sets electronic health records milestone

Wyoming Business Report, August 30, 2011

South Lincoln Medical Center here reached an important milestone recently for using electronic health record technology under the Medicare EHR Incentive Program. SLMC is the first hospital in Wyoming and one of the first Critical Access Hospitals in the nation to complete a 90-day period of demonstrating EHR "meaningful use" as defined by the Centers for Medicare/Medicaid Services. A CAH is a rural hospital located at least 35 miles from any other hospital with no more than 25 inpatient beds. SLMC, a 16-bed facility, has been serving the area since 1961. Having reached this milestone, SLMC qualifies for a federal incentive payment from Medicare. The Medicare EHR Incentive Program is a CMS effort designed to encourage the adoption and use of electronic health records. The Wyoming Department of Health is developing a Medicaid EHR Incentive Program, which is also likely to provide incentive payments to the Kemmerer hospital later this year. Wyoming Department of Health Director Tom Forslund said, "South Lincoln Medical Center's achievement is a welcome demonstration that electronic health record initiatives can be successful in Wyoming."