CMS recently announced some changes to the Stage 1 meaningful use objectives, measures, and exclusions for eligible professionals (EPs), eligible hospitals, and critical access hospitals (CAHs). Some of these changes will take effect as early as October 1, 2012, for eligible hospitals and CAHs, or January 1, 2013, for EPs. Other Stage 1 changes will not take effect until the 2014 fiscal or calendar year and will be optional in 2013. The table at the end of this publication summarizes the changes to the Stage 1 meaningful use objectives.
Exclusions for Menu Objectives
Beginning in 2014, EPs, eligible hospitals, and CAHs will no longer be permitted to count an exclusion toward the minimum of 5 menu objectives on which they must report if there are other menu objectives which they can select. In other words, a provider cannot select a menu objective and claim an exclusion for it if there are other menu objectives they can meet.
EPs, eligible hospitals, and CAHs will not be penalized for selecting a menu objective and claiming the exclusion if they would also qualify for the exclusions for all the remaining menu objectives. For example, EPs who must select to test the capability to submit data to either an immunization registry or a syndromic surveillance database as one of their menu objectives can select the menu objective for submitting data to an immunization registry and claim the exclusion if they would also be able to claim the exclusion for submitting data to a syndromic surveillance database. They would not be penalized for claiming this exclusion.