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July 27, 2010

AMA on Meaningful Use: Improvements Seen, But Barriers Remain


After reviewing the final meaningful use requirements for Electronic Health Records, the American Medical Association (AMA) acknowledged improvements, but warned that the EHR requirements may be difficult for physicians to meet, particularly those in small and solo practices.

Concerns included questions about product availability, the tight timeline for adoption, and the overall number of measures physicians must meet. The final rule requires physicians to meet 20 measures in the first year, which was seen as too high for physicians in smaller practices.

Pointing out that no currently marketed EHR’s would allow physicians to successfully meet meaningful use criteria, the AMA also questioned the feasibility of giving physicians just a few months to purchase, implement and assess the usability of EHR technology due out in fall ahead of the January 1, 2011 start date.

On the other hand, the AMA saw several important improvements in the final rules, such as: more flexibility for physicians to choose the meaningful use criteria that best fits their practice; the removal of measures not directly related to EHR’s;  and a reduction in the number of clinical quality measures physicians are required to report.

Via the American Medical Association .


Ms. Graham is a writer and editor with a current focus on health and wellness. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Erin Monda

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