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02 Apr 2015 

Michigan Rec’s Goal Of Helping 3,700 Doctors Achieve MU Of EHR Accomplished

The Michigan’s Regional Extension Center was appointed the task of helping 3,724 eligible physicians achieve Meaningful Use of Electronic Health Record technology (EHR). Recently, it announced the achievement of the original grant funded goal. This program was officially funded by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology and led by the Altarum Institute.

The effective implementation of EHRs has been observed to be useful to minimize errors, increase co-operation with patients, and improve practice workflow. The M-CEITA’s program has been much helpful for physicians to reap the benefits of health information technology, which has made EHR implementation easier, and also to comprehend the inflow of patients from across the state.

There are 62 centers similar to M-CEITA across the country, which help low-resource groups along with hands-on technical assistance. M-CEITA provides assistance for healthcare centers and physicians in rural, urban and critical access areas to achieve MU requirements. These healthcare centers lack the technical knowledge and workforce to achieve Meaningful Use attestations themselves, and M-CEITA’s work in this regard is commendable.

The Government Accountability Office reports that those providers and healthcare centers that work in association with the REC are two times more likely to receive incentives through the EHR incentive program. The report also highlighted that almost $80 million has been paid through such incentive programs to clients of M-CEITA within Michigan, which has boosted the MU implementation considerably.

Dan Armijo, vice president and director of Altarum Institute’s Health Innovation and Technical Assistance group commented, “Our center is the fifth largest in the country and has helped thousands of practices struggling to meet Meaningful Use criteria and train those that lack the in-house expertise to attain success.” It is interesting to note that M-CEITA’s program has done more to help improve MU implementation than what it was originally funded for.

MDCH is currently working closely with M-CEITA on two programs that work to improve health information technology practices such that hypertensive and diabetic patients get better care and support. In addition, the Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH) recently awarded additional funding support for M-CEITA to help healthcare providers in the Medicaid EHR Incentive Program with final stages of Meaningful Use.

Anya Day, director for Center for Implementation Science at Altarum Institute says, “It’s exciting to see the continued growth of the program and how it’s impacting the community. Going forward, these skills and technologies will greatly impact the health and well-being of our state for decades to come.”

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