Meaningful Use

MiHIN’s public health reporting services either directly or indirectly assist healthcare providers to achieve Meaningful Use and continue their follow-up reporting. The term Meaningful Use is used often in modern healthcare, but it’s still new enough that many healthcare professionals don’t understand it.

Put simply, ”Meaningful Use” represents the accepted practices for providers to demonstrate they are using certified Electronic Health Record (EHR) technology in ways that can be measured significantly in quality and quantity.

In support of the nationwide effort to adopt Electronic Health Record technology, Medicare and Medicaid are offering incentive programs to any eligible health care entity (professionals, hospitals, critical access hospitals) who adopt, implement, upgrade or demonstrate Meaningful Use of certified EHR technology.

A brief description of these incentives is below, but for detailed information on qualifying for Meaningful Use in the state of Michigan, please visit:

The Michigan Center for Effective IT Adoption

Meaningful Use Components and Incentives
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) specifies three main components of Meaningful Use:

  1. The use of a certified EHR in a meaningful manner, such as e-prescribing
  2. The use of certified EHR technology for electronic exchange of health information to improve quality of health care, such as public health reporting
  3. The use of certified EHR technology to submit clinical quality and other measures

To qualify for incentive payments, Meaningful Use requirements must be met in the following ways:

Medicare EHR Incentive Program—Eligible professionals, eligible hospitals, and critical access hospitals must successfully demonstrate Meaningful Use of certified electronic health record technology every year they participate in the program.  (Year 1 is 90 day reporting period.)

Medicaid EHR Incentive Program—Eligible professionals and eligible hospitals may qualify for incentive payments if they Adopt, Implement, Upgrade (A/I/U) or demonstrate Meaningful Use in their first year of participation. They must successfully demonstrate Meaningful Use for subsequent participation years.

  • Adopted:  Acquired and installed certified EHR technology. (For example, can show evidence of installation.)
  • Implemented: Began using certified EHR technology. (For example, provide staff training or data entry of patient demographic information into EHR.)
  • Upgraded: Expanded existing technology to meet certification requirements. (For example, upgrade to certified EHR technology or add new functionality to meet the definition of certified EHR technology.)