Posted By Ashok Mathur On December 15, 2014

Five things to look for in an EHR to make it easy to get meaningful use incentive $s?

five things to look for in EHR to get your meaningful use money

In other posts we described meaningful use and Nine easy steps to get your meaningful use $s. Here we describe the key steps to selecting an EHR which will make it easy for you to get Meaningful Use (MU) incentive $s.


  1. Certified EHR: Make sure the EHR you get is certified as “Complete EHR” and not “Modular EHR.” Modular EHRs do not meet all the requirements and down the road may become limiting.
  2. Compliant with each note: Make sure the EHR allows your providers to achieve compliance with each note quickly and easily. For example, when a provider finishes a note, the system should show a MU compliance pop up. The pop up should simply let provider know which aspects of MU have been completed and which remain to be done. This way, it provides an opportunity to get compliant with each note, every time, preventing scrambling later.
  3. Easy to get MU Reports: Make sure the EHR allows the provider and administrative staff to simply see how each provider is doing with meeting all the core and optional measures. This report should be easy to pull even by providers. If your EHR needs IT types to pull reports then you have a difficult task ahead. Definitely avoid EHRs which send you batch reports (e.g. twice a month). You need access to reports in real time.
  4. Easy to take corrective actions: The MU report would show you where you are not meeting the MU criteria and right from there, one should be able to drill down to the specific note to make corrections for compliance. Again, this needs to be easy so providers can do this simply by themselves without needing IT types.
  5. Lastly, get the right EHR partner: Despite all the technology, achieving MU compliance can be quite involved. Federal rules of meaningful use are quite complex with 100s of pages. To add to the complexity, each state has slightly different twists to it. To understand it all, it seems one needs a PhD. You are going to need MU experts who are going to hold your hand throughout the process. Apart from local community resources, make sure your EHR provides you Incentive assistance service. Make sure that the EHR vendor not only provides MU software, they contractually are obligated to provide assistance to you.

About Ashok Mathur

Ashok is passionate about public health. He works collaboratively with public health departments, sharing his insights on the benefits of app technology and cloud services for EHR use. He is the CEO and co-founder of Patagonia Health, an Electronic Health Records (EHR) software company focused on the public health sector.