Members of the Ann Arbor, Mich.-based College of Health Information Management Executives (CHIME) who responded to an August 2010 survey appear cautiously optimistic about their chances for achieving stimulus funding under the HITECH portion of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).
Of the 152 member CIOs who responded to the survey, 28 percent indicated that they expect to qualify for stimulus funding in the first six months of fiscal year 2011, which begins on Oct. 1, 2010. An additional 62 percent reported that they expect to qualify between April 1, 2011, and Sept. 30, 2012, which marks the end of Stage 1 of the incentive program.
Only 10 percent believe they will not qualify for stimulus funds until fiscal years 2013 or 2014.
CHIME members who are versed in the intricacies of the evolving federal program to incentivize the installation of electronic health records (EHRs) caution that much remains unknown about how the federal program will operate. Even though CHIME timed the survey to occur a few weeks after the July 13 release of the final regulations covering meaningful use objectives, top IT executives are still finding out about the nuances of the program, and many details remain unknown.