Doctors Say Meaningful Use Penalties and Incentives are “Meaningless,”

Seek New Opportunities to Transform Medical Practice

A growing number of physicians are choosing to abandon Meaningful Use saying the “meaningless criteria” to attest interfered too much with their ability to care for patients. Some doctors said they would never attest to meaningful use in any capacity, despite incentive payments and penalties, and others are abandoning meaning use after meeting criteria in previous years.

“This disruptive need to fulfill meaningful use criteria interfered with my ability to care for my patients, and despite the consequences, I stopped [attesting],” said James Legan, M.D. in an article by Madelyn Kearns, Associate Editor of Medical Practice Insider.  Instead, Dr. Legan decided to explore other technologies and workflow processes to offset the cost of the penalties and results so far have shown “a significant improvement in workflow and patient satisfaction.”

“I have had the time and freedom to do two extremely transforming paradigm shifting maneuvers in the office, which make the meaningful use incentive and penalty meaningless because, first and foremost, I was able to cater to what was best for my patient and, as a result, it has been very productive,” Legan explained.

Contrary to what some believe is opposition to technology or regulations, the concern cited by doctors is that patient care may be compromised. In fact, Dr. Legan said his decision to opt-out of MU has enabled him to try new technologies to improve efficiencies, including patient portals and Chromebook.

Industry experts say other medical practices may choose to follow a similar path, especially if they see more doctors with results like Dr. Legan.” I am practicing at a level I never imagined possible just a few years ago when taking the blind leap into the realm of the electronic record.”

Source: "The value in saying no to MU attestation," Madelyn Kearns, Associate Editor, Medical Practice Insider. August 7, 2014.

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