Meaningful Use Overview

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 has the goal of improving the quality and effectiveness of health care through the expanded use of Electronic Health Records as measured by Meaningful Use. 

Each stage of Meaningful Use includes a set of standards, implementation specifications, and certification criteria for EHR technology.  The five priorities of Meaningful Use are:

The staging of the Meaningful Use program sets forth a path with each stage building upon the former by focusing on a priority area as illustrated below. 

Arrow expanding in width and heading upwards. On the arrow are three circles increading in diameters as the error expands. The circles are titled (from smaller to larger): Stage 1: Data Capture and Sharing, Stage 2: Advanced Clinical Processes, and Stage 3: Improved Outcomes. The phrase 'Focus of' is pointing to each of the stages.

Medicaid eligible professionals do not have to demonstrate meaningful use in their first payment year. They only have to demonstrate that they have Adopted, Implemented, or Upgraded (AIU) to certified EHR technology.

In order for an eligible professional to receive payment in the second year of participation, they will have to attest to meaningful use of certified EHR for a continuous 90-day period. In subsequent years, the Meaningful Use reporting period is the entire calendar year. (NOTE:  all providers will have a 90 day reporting period in 2014).  The Meaningful Use Getting Started Tip sheet [PDF 188 KB] has been developed to help providers prepare for Meaningful Use attestation.

Refer to  Timeframes and Reporting Periods [PDF 220 KB]  for further information.