4 MU Tips from a Multispecialty Practice

Carrie Vaughan, April 6, 2012

This article appears in the April, 2012 issue of The Doctor's Office.

For the most part, the first group of providers to qualify for Stage 1 of the meaningful use regulations in 2011—and deposit incentive checks in the bank—were early adopters of electronic health records such as Old Hook Medical Associates, LLC in Emerson, NJ, a multispecialty practice that implemented its EHR in 2007.  

OHMA has one location and 20 providers, including full- and part-time positions and nurse practitioners. It began using a commercial EHR solution in 2007. "That was essentially our first real EHR," says Edward Gold, MD, president of OHMA, as well as an oncologist and hematologist. "We had been using a medical manager product and were using some of the EMR capabilities that it had, which were limited. But we really weren't fully electronic until 2007."

OHMA began its 90-day meaningful use ­attestation period on January 1, 2011. It submitted its data on April 19, 2011, qualified for everything it submitted, and received a $180,000 incentive payment in May 2011.

The practice submitted data for 10 physicians. OHMA has some part-time physicians who didn't qualify because they only work a couple of days per week and OHMA isn't their primary practice, Gold explained. 

He offers the following advice to practices considering MU attestation: 

1. Don't accept pushback.
Gold says OHMA made a corporate decision to switch from paper to EHRs and didn't accept opposition from its physicians. As such, the physicians didn't get to choose whether to use the technology.

Carrie Vaughan Carrie Vaughan is a senior editor with HealthLeaders magazine. She can be reached at cvaughan@healthleadersmedia.com.

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