As previously reported, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) plans to audit healthcare providers that received incentive payments to adopt electronic health record (EHR) technology.
We have now received reports confirming that certain provider entities have been audited in Florida regarding these EHR incentive payments. The OIG targets payments made to providers under both the Medicare and Medicaid incentive programs.
The Medicaid auditors are requesting, among other information:
– Basic licensing and enrollment information;
– Excerpts from cost report worksheets and pages;
– Supporting documentation for EHR incentive payments received;
– EHR Technology and Security Plan for Safeguarding Technology and Patient Information; and,
– Certification information for EHR software.
In addition, the auditors expect that providers have documented their compliance with program requirements via screen shots taken at the time of the provider’s attestation. We have confirmed that auditors have asked some physicians to return incentive payments if such documentation is not available.
What can providers do?
1. Maintain detailed records relating to the implementation of EHR technology (and updates), including all documentation that supports data submitted in connection with the EHR incentive program.
2. Periodically check the list of certified EHR products to confirm that your EHR technology is still certified. Some products have been decertified.
3. Work with compliance counsel to have your compliance program pre-audited to avoid surprises down the road.