Growth Of New York Physician Participation In Meaningful Use Of Electronic Health Records Was Variable 201112
Author: Hye-Young Jung, Mark A. Unruh, Rainu Kaushal, Joshua R. Vest
The federal government has invested $30 billion to promote the adoption and use of electronic health records (EHRs) through the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs. However, the associations between the characteristics of physicians, practices, and markets and the patterns of provider participation in ongoing federal meaningful-use incentive programs over time have been largely unexplored. In this article we describe the participation of New York physicians during the first two years of the meaningful-use initiative. We examined longitudinal patterns to identify characteristics associated with nonparticipation, late adoption of EHRs, noncontinuous participation, and switching programs. We found that 8.1 percent of 26,368 New York physicians participated in the Medicare incentive program in 2011, and 6.1 percent participated in the Medicaid program. Physician participation in the programs grew to 23.9 percent and 8.5 percent, respectively, in 2012. Many physicians in the Medicaid incentive program in 2011 did not participate in either program in 2012. Prior EHR use, access to financial resources, and organizational capacity were physician characteristics associated with early and consistent participation in the meaningful-use initiative. Annual participation requirements, coupled with different options to meet meaningful-use criteria under the incentive programs, create disparate groups of physicians, which illustrates the need to monitor participants for continued participation.