Eighty-nine members of Congress have asked the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to give pathologists a break and extend the hardship exemption they currently enjoy for all of Stage 3 of the Meaningful Use program.
In the letter--dated July 10 and addressed to CMS Administrator Marilyn Tavenner--the lawmakers point out that CMS had recognized in its 2012 final rule implementing Stage 2 of the program that it was difficult for pathologists to meet the Meaningful Use requirements and granted a one year exception for 2015, the first year that penalties will be imposed. They now are asking that the exception be expanded to include the full five-year maximum allowed under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
"Pathologists have limited direct contact with patients and do not operate in EHRs," the letter states. "Instead, pathologists use sophisticated computerized laboratory information systems (LISs) to support the work of analyzing patient specimens and generating test results. These LISs exchange laboratory and pathology data with EHRs."
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Source: Fierce EMR