Stage 2 Helps Boost Hospitals’ Reporting of Public Health Data

March 11, 2015 in News

During 2014, eligible hospitals in Stage 2 of the Medicare meaningful use program significantly increased their electronic reporting of health data to public health agencies and registries, according to the latest data from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT, FierceEMR reports (Durben Hirsch, FierceEMR, 3/10).


Under the 2009 economic stimulus package, providers who demonstrate meaningful use of certified electronic health records can qualify for Medicaid and Medicare incentive payments.

Eligible hospitals under Stage 2 of the Medicare meaningful use program are required to report on three public health measures:

  • Immunizations;
  • Infectious disease test results; and
  • Emergency department or urgent care syndromic surveillance data (Gruessner, EHR Intelligence, 3/11).

The reporting measures are optional for Stage 1 (ONC data brief, March 2015).

Details of Electronic Reporting

The data, presented at a Health IT Policy Committee meeting on Tuesday, show that 72% of eligible hospitals reporting to Stage 2 for fiscal year 2014 have reported on all three public health measures, compared with 5% of eligible hospitals reporting to Stage 1 for FY 2014.

Specifically, the data show that among eligible hospitals reporting for Stage 2:

  • 88% electronically reported to immunization registries;
  • 85% electronically reported lab results; and
  • 75% electronically reported syndromic surveillance (Walsh, Clinical Innovation Technology, 3/10).

During the meeting, ONC officials also shared data related to care transitions, patient engagement and patient safety.

For example, the latest ONC data show that:

70% of all medications administered at Stage 2-eligible hospitals were tracked with an electronic medication administration record;

  • Stage 2-eligible hospitals sent electronic summaries of care for 36% of transitions; and
  • 15% of patients in Stage 2-elgible hospitals viewed, downloaded or transmitted their electronic health data at least one time (Raths, Healthcare Informatics, 3/10).

Dawn Heisey-Grove — public health analyst at ONC –said, “We’re rapidly changing the whole perspective on what can be done in terms of public health” (Clinical Innovation Technology, 3/10).

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