First Oakwood Physicians Receive Incentives for Electronic Health Records

By: | Tags: , , , , , | October 31st, 2011

Centers of Medicare & Medicaid Services pays $18,000, the Maximum for 2011

Dearborn, Mich. – October 31 — Two Oakwood physicians are among the first in the healthcare system to be compensated for showing meaningful use through the implementation of eClinicalWorks, an Electronic Health Records (EHRs) system.

Greg Marcarian, MD, and Steve Atallah, MD, each received an $18,000 check from the Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), for demonstrating meaningful use under the American Reinvestment and Recovery (ARRA) act. The incentive is the maximum allowed in 2011.

“I am quite pleased to have received our first incentive payment from CMS only 10 months after going live with eClinicalWorks,” said Dr. Marcarian. “While there has been change in our workflow, we have seen marked improvement in our documentation which has improved the quality of our medical record and has been instrumental in meeting the meaningful use guidelines. For our five physician practice, the payment has covered my share of our group’s direct start-up costs. Both eClinicalWorks as well as Oakwood’s support personnel have been very helpful in providing the tools and guidance throughout the learning phase and attestation process.”

The ARRA specifies that the main components of meaningful use as the use of certified EHR technology for electronic exchange of health information to improve quality of health care; and the use of certified EHR technology to submit clinical quality and other measures. Essentially, it means that healthcare providers need to show they’re using certified EHR technology in ways that can be measured significantly in quality and in quantity.

Oakwood has helped its physicians reach those goals by offering training classes, continued support, and setting expectations on government requirements.

“Oakwood’s main focus is to assist physicians in adopting an EMR as well as helping them achieve Meaningful Use incentives. Our approach was to develop a comprehensive solution set that incorporates a strong physician office EMR with excellent implementation, training, and support services,” said Paula Smith, Chief Information Officer for OHI. “Having a solid foundation makes it much easier for the physician practices to attain meaningful use, as well as take advantage of all the benefits of utilizing an EMR.”

Dr. Marcarian and Dr. Atallah were the first in their practice to receive the incentive, but the other three physicians have since attested and received it, too.

“I recommend that any physician that adopts an EMR be actively involved with how meaningful use impacts the practice,” said Atallah. “There’s a lot more to getting the government incentives then just purchasing an EMR. I have to commend my staff and the Oakwood team; we couldn’t have done it without them.”

“eClinicalWorks provides a comprehensive system that is preventative-care oriented, helping providers deliver a higher-level of care,” said Girish Kumar Navani, CEO and co-founder of eClinicalWorks. “Since meaningful use was announced as part of the HITECH Act, we have been even more diligent in ensuring that not only our system met all of the criteria, but also our customers are educated on the guidelines. eClinicalWorks makes it easy for doctors to attest through MAQ Dashboards and we are excited that Dr. Steve Attalah and Dr. Greg Marcarian have successfully attested.”