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CHIME hopeful for shorter meaningful use reporting period

In this podcast, a CHIME executive says Congress may not need to act on the Flex-IT bill and CHIME hopes meaningful use attestations pick up in 2015.

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Capitol Hill strategists for the College of Health Information Management Executives (CHIME) see better days ahead in 2015 for health IT CIOs and their provider organizations.

After months of rebuffing -- at least through inaction -- calls from CHIME and many other health IT groups, CMS finally relented and agreed to return this year to 2014's 90-day meaningful use reporting period.

That news came out in a blog post from a top CMS official saying the agency intends to relax the reporting period, which had been set at 365 days, a stretch that many physicians and healthcare system officials felt was onerous.

CHIME is wary but confident that the shorter reporting period will become a reality, Leslie Krigstein, CHIME's director of congressional affairs, tells SearchHealthIT in this podcast recorded at the ONC Annual Meeting.

The reduced reporting time frame, along with other flexibilities in meaningful use attestation that CMS has announced, makes it more likely that most healthcare systems, large and small, will have attested to stage 2 by the end of 2015, Krigstein says.

CHIME is also monitoring moves by the former "Reboot" Republican senators critical of meaningful use, who are now in key committee positions and are eyeing the loosening of FDA restrictions on health IT devices, Krigstein says.

EHR interoperability and healthcare payment reform, including "pay for performance," also promise to be big issues, she predicts in the podcast.

Let us know what you think about the story; email Shaun Sutner, news and features writer or contact @SSutner on Twitter.

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