FAQ explains use of EHR technology certified for inpatient setting

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), which administers the EHR Incentive Programs, has updated its FAQ system with new information pertaining to eligible providers (EPs) interested in using hospital EHR modules to achieve meaningful use.

Here is the new FAQ, courtesy of CMS:

Question: Can an EP use EHR technology certified for an inpatient setting to meet a meaningful use objective and measure?

Answer: Yes. For objectives and measures where the capabilities and standards of EHR technology designed and certified for an inpatient setting are equivalent to or require more information than EHR technology designed and certified for an ambulatory setting, an EP can use the EHR technology designed and certified for an inpatient setting to meet an objective and measure. 

There are some EP objectives, however, that have no corollary on the inpatient side.

As a result, an EP must possess Certified EHR Technology designed for an ambulatory setting for such objectives. Access the FAQ system and reference ONC FAQ 12-10-021-1 and 9-10-017-2 and CMS FAQ 10162 for discussions on what it means to possess Certified EHR Technology. Reference ONC FAQ 6-12-025-1 for a list of affected capabilities and standards, and how that relates to the exclusion and deferral options of meaningful use.

You can find this FAQ by searching for it by FAQ number in the CMS FAQ System. Type in 6421 in the "FAQ # Search" box found at the top-left side of the page. Choose the "FAQ #" option by clicking the circle and highlighting it in blue.

For additional information on the EHR Incentive Programs, click here.