buy percocet Patient Access and Medicare Protection Act Passes « ACOFP – IL

ACOFP – IL

Patient Access and Medicare Protection Act Passes

Hardship Exemption Approved for Stage 2 Meaningful Use
On Friday, December 18, Congress passed S. 2425, the Patient Access and Medicare Protection Act, to provide critical flexibility for the hardship exceptions process for Stage 2 of the Meaningful Use program. This much-needed bipartisan legislation allows for a blanket hardship exemption for the 2015 reporting period for all providers who apply by March 15, 2016.

The ACOFP strongly supported these efforts through advocacy on the Hill, and this legislation represents an important legislative victory for osteopathic family physicians.

Under the Meaningful Use program requirements issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), physicians must report for a 90-day period during 2015 in order to avoid future penalties in 2017. However, CMS did not release the final rule with modifications to Stage 2 until October 6, 2015 – less than 90 days before the end of the year. CMS’ own delays left physicians without guidance on how to attest to Stage 2 until it was too late to begin a 90-day reporting period.

While physicians had the option to apply for a hardship exception to avoid the 2017 penalties, CMS would have been required to process these applications on a case-by-case basis. S. 2425 provides a blanket hardship exception for providers who apply by March 15, 2016. This will provide certainty and help alleviate the administrative burden on osteopathic family physicians by eliminating the need to wait for CMS to process each individual application and make a determination.

Physicians will also still be able to apply for a hardship exception before July 1, 2016, but such applications will be processed on a case-by-case basis.

S. 2425 now awaits the President’s signature to become law. ACOFP will provide members with more details on how to apply for a hardship exception as information is made available by CMS.

 

Comments are closed.