CMS Proposed Rule for Stage 2 MU Includes ACR ‘Asks’

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The ACR expressed an initial thumbs-up on the proposed rule for Stage 2 Meaningful Use, released by CMS on February 23. According to a press release from the college, many of the concessions it requested were incorporated into the rulemaking in some form, including a discretionary menu-set measure that requires image accessibility via certified EHR technology, menu set measures to promote registry participation, and more flexible exclusions from individual measures, likely to please all specialty physicians who have struggled to make the requirements relevant to their practices. “We are encouraged by early indications from the agencies that many of ACR's various 'asks' have apparently been included to a certain degree,” said Keith Dreyer, MD, chair of the ACR IT and Informatics Committee-Government Relations Subcommittee, in a press release. “We will review both proposed rules over the next several days and provide additional information, including an in-depth regulatory summary, as soon as possible,” he said. Following a 60-day public comment period, the agencies will begin the process of developing the final rules. The ACR will provide more information about the content of the proposed rule as soon as internal reviews and regulatory analyses are complete, and invites interested members to provide input for potential inclusion in the future ACR comments. “It is important to remember that these proposed rules have a very long way to go in the rulemaking process. Many things can, and will, change before the final rules are promulgated by CMS and ONC later this year,” said Dreyer. Still ahead, CMS will release the ONC’s proposed rule on Stage 2 EHR standards, specifications, and certification criteria in the Federal Register on March 7. ACR Press Release