MeHI Newsletter
MeHI PROGRAM ANNOUNCEMENTS
The Massachusetts Digital Health Initiative
On Thursday, January 7, 2016, Governor Charlie Baker announced the establishment of a collaborative digital health initiative which will bring together public, private, academic, and healthcare leaders to build a stronger and more connected statewide digital health ecosystem. During the event, Governor Baker designated MeHI to lead the state's involvement in the Initiative.

The launch assembled industry leaders from the Massachusetts Competitive Partnership ( MACP), cabinet secretaries including Sec. Jay Ash of the Executive Office of Housing & Economic Development, and Sec. Marylou Sudders of the Executive Office of Health & Human Services, as well as healthcare leaders such as Boston Children's Hospital CEO Sandra Fenwick.

Directed by a strategy committee that will be composed of leaders across industry, academia, health care, and government, MeHI will work on cluster development activities designed to promote and support the sector. These efforts will include the development of a market access program intended to help digital health innovations in going to market faster, by building strategic connections between entrepreneurs and healthcare systems statewide.

Furthermore, MeHI will partner with state agencies to better capture the "big data" opportunity in the healthcare sector.
MeHI will also partner with MACP to support a "hub" for the industry in the City of Boston where digital health programming, learning sessions, and networking events will be held, with the aim of building a strong industry network for startups.

As an emerging industry cluster, digital health was identified as a key component of the Commonwealth's   economic development plan, which was signed by Governor Baker on December 23, 2015. The digital health market is emerging rapidly and has the potential to impact the state's economic bottom line by creating jobs, attracting investment, and developing solutions that improve healthcare delivery and ultimately help contain healthcare costs.

Read the press release from the launch of the Initiative, or visit the Massachusetts Digital Health Cluster website to find   Digital Health companies, industry resources, or   events  from around the Commonwealth.
Digital Health Initiative Launch - Jan. 7, 2016

CAREERS
Visit our website for job opportunities at MeHI.
CONTACT US
Massachusetts
eHealth Institute

1-855-MassEHR
ehealth@masstech.org 

eHealth Services Center
1-855-MassEHR

View Interviews with eQIP Grantees Talking About Their Health IT Transformation
MeHI recently awarded a total of approximately $2.3M of eQuality Incentive Program (eQIP) grants to 25 Behavioral Health and 14 Long-Term and Post-Acute Care organizations. The grantees are in the early stages of achieving program milestones that will advance them through the adoption and implementation of Health IT at their various Massachusetts facilities.

MeHI funding and support is helping these grantees install electronic health records and connect them to the Mass HIway to share health information.

Listen to these testimonials from eQIP grantees including:

Patrick Brown, Contracts & Compliance Manager, Wediko Children's Services - Boston
Kiefer Calisto, Helpdesk Manager, Child & Family Services, Inc. - New Bedford
Michael Clontz, Director of School Based Services, Wediko Children's Services - Boston
Maria Lucci, Senior Director of Ambulatory Services, Lowell House - Lowell
Judy Powell, Senior VP, Patient Services, Massachusetts Healthcare Advisors - Quincy
Cindy Walsh, Director of Clinical Services, The Boston Home - Dorchester Center
Ken Ward, Senior IT Director, Berkshire Healthcare Systems - Pittsfield
Michael Zhuwao, Matrix Administrator, Elizabeth Seton Residence - Wellesley

 
Develop Advanced HIE Use Cases with our Newly Enhanced HIE Toolkit
MeHI advises providers to develop use cases as part of the planning process when connecting to a Health Information Exchange (HIE). A use case is a narrative describing how the HIE will be used to accomplish a business goal. Those use cases designed with a goal in mind are a valuable planning tool.

A well-crafted use case communicates the functional requirements that inform the technical planning. Having this worked out first helps scope and develop the solution and accelerates the technical evaluation process.

Developing use cases requires understanding your business needs i.e. the issues and opportunities to address. Defining the needs early in the process will accelerate the design effort and provide a basis to evaluate success.

Use the newly enhanced HIE Toolkit, which includes many more and easier-to-use templates, icons, and examples to help develop your use case.

The use case strategy was originally designed for building connections to the statewide HIE, the Mass HIway. To explore which healthcare organizations and providers have enrolled, check out our Mass HIway Directory.


 

View Health IT Educational Videos
The new Recordings section on our website contains videos of educational events and webinar presentations. The videos enable you to review the materials at your own pace and are organized by topic for easy access. Many recent event presentations explain the latest advancements in Health IT, Meaningful Use, HIE, the Mass HIway, the Medicaid EHR Incentive Program, Quality Improvement, PQRS, and MIPS.

Video Topics:

Meaningful Use
Privacy & Security
Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS)
Health Information Exchange (HIE)
Connected Communities
Other (Quality Improvement, MIPS, etc.)

 
The Future of Meaningful Use
In a recent blog post released on January 19th, CMS Administrator Andy Slavitt and HHS Acting Assistant Secretary Karen DeSalvo provided expanded insight into the future of Meaningful Use.

The main takeaways from this announcement are: 
  • Meaningful Use is not going away;
  • Stage 3 Meaningful Use is still in effect; and
  • The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) will focus on quality, cost and clinical practice improvement. Meaningful Use will be integrated into the program over time.
Read the entire blog post to understand what these changes will mean for hospitals, doctors, and other healthcare providers. 
 
Questions?

Call 1-855-MassEHR or email MassEHR@masstech.org for assistance.
PROGRAM YEAR 2015 DEADLINES
Medicaid EHR Incentive Program    
Eligible Professionals & Dual Eligible Hospitals - Adopt, Implement, Upgrade (AIU)

Eligible Professionals (MU)

Children's and Medicaid-Only Hospitals (MU)
Open
Now



May 20, 2016

September 23, 2016


Close
August 14, 2016



August 14, 2016


October 21, 2016 
Medicare EHR Incentive Program
Eligible Professionals, Eligible Hospitals and Critical Access Hospitals  

Now

February 29, 2016
PQRS Submission
MeHI Registry

Now


March 17, 2016

eHEALTH INDUSTRY NEWS
MU Payment Adjustments and Reconsideration Applications 
CMS guidelines state that Eligible Professionals (EPs) who fail to demonstrate Meaningful Use (MU) are subject to negative payment adjustments to their Medicare Part B reimbursements. 
 
2016 Payment Adjustments

EPs who failed to demonstrate MU for Program Year 2014 may have received a notice from CMS regarding 2016 payment adjustments. If you received such a notice and feel that the 2016 negative payment adjustment is being applied in error, you may submit a Reconsideration Application to CMS. 

Resources:
Please note that the deadline to submit your 2016 Payment Adjustment Reconsideration Application to CMS is February 29, 2016.
 
2017 Payment Adjustments

EPs who fail to demonstrate MU for Program Year 2015 will be subject to negative payment adjustments in 2017. EPs can avoid negative payment adjustments in 2017 by successfully attesting to MU through the Medicare EHR Incentive Payment Program by February 29, 2016, or through the MA Medicaid EHR Incentive Payment Program between May 20, 2016 and August 14, 2016. EPs who are unable to demonstrate MU for Program Year 2015 due to a hardship beyond their control may submit a Hardship Exception Application to CMS. The deadline for Program Year 2015 Hardship Exception Applications is July 1, 2016

Resource:
Questions?

Call 1-855-MassEHR or email MassEHR@masstech.org for assistance.
Medicare EHR Incentive Program Hardship Exceptions
In December 2015, the Patient Access and Medicare Protection Act (the Act) was signed into law. The Act includes provisions that affect Health Information Technology (HIT) adoption. The Act acknowledges hardship exceptions from the Meaningful Use requirements for the   
ited to one full-year cost reporting period. 

 

The following categories are listed on the CMS Hardship Exception Application Form:

  • Insufficient Internet Connectivity
  • Extreme and Uncontrollable Circumstances
  • Lack of Control over the Availability of Certified EHR Technology - EP Only
  • Lack of Face-to-Face Patient Interaction - EP Only
Eligible Professionals have until March 15, 2016, and Eligible Hospitals have until April 1, 2016, to apply to CMS for an exception.

For more information and to access Hardship Exception Application forms, please see the CMS Payment Adjustments & Hardship Information page and Instructions . 
INDUSTRY EVENTS
Digital Health Event for Entrepreneurs - February 11 th  
MeHI is hosting an expert panel discussion, followed by a Q&A and networking session at no cost to digital health entrepreneurs.

We are expecting a great conversation on a wide range of topics including:
  • The unique aspects of building a healthcare startup company;
  • Differentiating between your user, buyers and payers; and
  • Getting your first round of funding and the first customer.
We have a great panel lined up including:

Panelists:
Moderator:
Graham Gardner, CEO, Kyruus

When:
Thursday, February 11, 2016
6:30 PM - 7:30 PM

Where:
Venture Cafe (Havana) @ CIC
One Broadway, 5th Floor
Cambridge, MA 02142


HIMSS16 Health IT Conference | Spring 2016 | Las Vegas, NV

The 2016 HIMSS Annual Conference & Exhibition, February 29 - March 4, 2016 in Las Vegas, brings together 40,000+ health IT professionals, clinicians, executives, and vendors from around the world. Exceptional education, world-class speakers, cutting-edge health IT products, and powerful networking are hallmarks of this industry-leading conference. More than 300 education programs feature keynotes, thought leader sessions, round-table discussions, and e-sessions, plus preconference symposia and workshops.

On the HIMSS16 Exhibit Floor:
  • 1,300+ leading health IT vendors
  • 3D Printing Row
  • Clinical & Business Intelligence Knowledge Center
  • Connected Health Experience
  • Cybersecurity Command Center
  • Disaster Preparedness Knowledge Center
  • Federal Health IT Solutions Pavilion
  • First-Time Exhibitors Area
  • HIMSS Interoperability Showcase┬«
  • HX360TM Innovation Pavilion
  • Intelligent Health Pavilion
  • Population Health Knowledge Center
  • Revenue Cycle Knowledge Center
  • University Row
HIMSS16 is the place to network and connect with thousands of industry leaders and other health IT professionals. Registration is now open.

Dates:
February 29 - March 4, 2016

Location:
Sands Expo and Convention Center
201 Sands Ave.
Las Vegas, NV 89169

Event Details and Registration Information