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Latest Wave of MU Audits Delivers a Fresh Scare

Scott Mace, for HealthLeaders Media, October 29, 2013

Once an audit notice is received, Tenet has a policy that its audit response team decides a course of action within 36 hours. Among other things, Tenet has had to demonstrate to auditors that clinical decision support rules are firing correctly. OIG staff even visited Tenet facilities in person to see some of these rules in action.

A Necessary Burden
The twists and turns of these audits seem to go on and on. Not every provider tuned into this CHIME Webinar, so I hope raising the issue to a higher profile here is useful to all providers. Like too many things in healthcare, it seems that larger organizations, with more clinical, financial and legal resources, might be better able to respond to these audit requests.

Probably those at greatest risk, as usual, are smaller community hospitals, while the very smallest of practices might benefit from being more simply organized than larger providers.

As with audits in so many areas of healthcare, audits of Meaningful Use are a necessary burden of leadership, and the continuing scrutiny of the value of technologies purchased with Federal and state funds shows no sign of easing.


Scott Mace is senior technology editor at HealthLeaders Media.
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4 comments on "Latest Wave of MU Audits Delivers a Fresh Scare"


Jack Kolk (11/15/2013 at 9:04 AM)
It's more cut and dried than you think. As a company that has done 100's of risk assessments and been through the contesting of failed audits we know the process and what they are looking for. The fact that CHIMES members are still arguing over what is required is silly. The final guidance for a compliant risk assessment is at : http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/privacy/hipaa/administrative/securityrule/rafinalguidancepdf.pdf

Ellis Malovany (11/6/2013 at 9:29 AM)
This is precisely the reason why having the support of an accredited EMR company is critical. Providers have enough on their plate dealing with falling reimbursements and a confusing environment that has led many providers to throw up their hands and consider retirement or sidestepping into an alternative career. EMR companies need to stay on top of the changing targets and build value by proactively conveying information to their provider/clients. Unfortunately, in this "wild west" of EMR technology, only a handful of EMR companies understand how to manage and support.

Frank Poggio (10/30/2013 at 10:10 AM)
Scott, Cut an Dried?? I don't think so. At least not in the way you may think. The MU Attestation and vendor Certificaiton program and process was slapped together in a political rush. After completing dozens of Certifications for vendors I can attest that the process is far from black and white. Scripts get revised on a monthly basis, MU criteria is still getting redefined today. There was no audit process pre-tested and put in pace in advance, niether for vendors or providers. The appeals process is as clear as mud...and on and on. The only thing that will be Cut and Dried is: Providers will get the CUTS and vendors will be hung out to Dry when this is all over!