NPs and CNMs Earn Medicaid EHR Incentive Payments

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The summary story for advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) in 2012 was that substantial financial incentives were earned by nurse practitioners (NPs) and certified nurse-midwives (CNMs) for adopting, installing, or upgrading EHR systems for their Medicaid patients. However, when Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced that more than half of all doctors and other eligible providers have received Medicare or Medicaid incentive payments for adopting or meaningfully using electronic health records (EHRs), she was mainly referring to physicians who were allowed to participate in the Medicare EHR incentive programs. As a direct result of the intermittent but all so frequent Congressional myopia when it comes to nurses, APRNs were forgotten when it came to drafting the provisions for Medicare EHR incentives. Further, CRNAs and CNSs were forgotten when it came to Medicaid. If the Congress truly wants to enable a seamless national system of inter-operational electronic health records, important clinician groups should not be left in their blind spots. APRNs and the patients of APRNs deserve better.

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