Now that the Meaningful Use Program is well under way, we would like to send out a quick reminder about a dreaded topic – Meaningful Use audits. It’s a scary thought, but it should still be addressed so that you’re prepared in case it happens.
Meaningful Use for Optometrists: Audit Documentation
Since the Meaningful Use Incentive Program’s introduction in 2009, most of the EHR incentives have been paid out, especially for those who have participated in the Medicare program. Even though the incentives are winding down it’s still important to make sure that you’re up to date on past Meaningful Use documentation because audits can still be lurking in the corner!
A common concern about Meaningful Use audits is how long after attestation can an audit happen. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services state that you should retain all relevant supporting documentation for 6 years post attestation. So make sure you are obsessive about documenting everything and keep documentation for 6 years after attestation.
As we mentioned, it’s a scary thought, but it can definitely happen. In fact, Jim Tate from EMR Advocate shares his recent encounter with a practice facing audits:
“... I was recently contacted by an EP who had received an audit engagement letter from the gang over at Figliozzi & Company. That EP had never been audited before and received the letter just a few weeks ago in early September 2015. The audit was for a 2011 attestation. That’s right, the audit was going all the way back to the 2011 attestation.”
For those who fail their audit, the provider must not only return their incentive payment for that year, they will also be scheduled for another audit for another participating year.
We didn’t mean for this post to scare you if it did! But simply being aware will help you be prepared if an audit happens.
For more information about the Meaningful Use program, check out our Meaningful Use eBooks:
- A Beginner’s Guide to Meaningful Use
- Meaningful Use Fantasy Vs. Fact
- Understanding the Final Rule and Changes for 2015
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