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CMS: 44,000 Have Applied for Hardship Exception

September 30, 2014
by Gabriel Perna
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Approximately 44,000 eligible professionals (EPs) have applied for a meaningful use exception, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) confirmed to Healthcare Informatics.

The number was first reported in Politico. The exemption is for providers who will not attest to meaningful use in 2015. A CMS spokesperson told HCI that the agency is sorting through the applications and notifying each provider of their status. They say that the majority of exemption requests are coming from first-time attestations that are experiencing issues with their 2014 certified electronic health record technology (CEHRT).

CMS reported the number after Politico published a story about CMS’ Registration and Attestation website not being able to accommodate attestations until “mid-October.”  This would affect physicians in their first year of meaningful use because they are required to attest by Oct. 1, 2014 or face penalties. CMS officials noted that these EPs had an opportunity to file a hardship exception by July 1 and should have done so.

Applications for the exemption were due on July 1, 2014.

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