The Hawai‘i Health Information Exchange (HHIE) recently announced it will discontinue technical assistance for its Quality Payment Program, including Meaningful Use and PQRS at the end of March 2017. This decision was based on insufficient demand for these services among providers. These services were not financially self-sustaining and continuing to provide them would have eventually impacted the entire organization.
Over the past seven years, the Hawai‘i Health Information Exchange can proudly say that we helped over 500 providers reached attestation. There are others who will be reaching that attestation stage this month. The following are some frequently asked questions for those providers who have not yet attained attestation.
Q. Why has HHIE chosen to move in this direction?
A. HHIE made this decision based on market demand. There simply was not sufficient demand for these services. It would have been difficult to continue these services because they would not have been financially self-sustaining. Unfortunately, not all providers saw the value of these services. Continuing to provide these services would have required HHIE to find other financial resources to fund this service since other funds we receive are earmarked for other valuable programs.
Q. What does this mean for me if I haven’t attained attestation yet?
A. For those who have not yet attested for 2016 Meaningful Use, please be assured that HHIE is committed to assisting you with your Medicare and Medicaid Meaningful Use attestations as well any assistance you may require for audits for the current calendar year and any pended attestations. We would also be glad to provide you with any necessary documentation for you to conduct a self-audit. If we have not yet reached out to you to find out how we can help you, please contact Rebecca Burton, MD, Director of Provider Services at (808) 441-1429 (direct line) or firstname.lastname@example.org and we will have a healthcare technology specialist contact you immediately.
Q. What happens if I am not able meet the deadline?
A. HHIE will do what it can to help you. Providers who got a late start in the process may have a challenge with this month’s deadlines, but we will do what we can to support you.
Q. Will HHIE be able to support me with two analysts so that I can meet the required deadlines for 2016 by the end of March?
A. Fortunately, the majority of our contracted providers have already reached attestation for 2016, so our analysts will be able to dedicate time to reaching out to the remaining providers to help them meet the deadlines by the end of this month.
Q. If I’ve already attested for 2016 Meaningful Use, what else can HHIE help me with?
A. For those who have already attested for 2016 Meaningful Use, HHIE will provide you with assistance for audits and pended attestations. If you have been notified about these, please contact Provider Services at (808) 441-1429.
Q. If I have a net outstanding balance of hours on my contract bundle, will I receive a refund?
A. Absolutely. As you can imagine, our primary focus now is to help the remaining providers reach attestation. However, after the attestation period, we will review all current contracts and services that have been provided. Refunds will be issued for any unused hours for the current contract year. These refunds are scheduled for distribution in April 2017. Please note that there may be a delay in refunds for some because of potential pended attestations.
Q. What resources can you refer me to meet the 2017 requirements?
A. For those who purchased hours for assistance with 2017 MIPS, we are happy to provide resources where you may seek technical assistance for the 2017 year. Please visit our website for updates or call Provider Services at (808) 441-1429.
Q. I signed up for the functions for the health information exchange. How does HHIE’s decision to discontinue my technical support for Meaningful Use affect me?
A. The technical support for our Quality Payment Program is a separate initiative from our work on the health information exchange. Although we are not continuing technical support for the Quality Payment Program, we are continuing our focus to strengthen the functionality and interoperability of the health information exchange.
There will be no changes with your subscription to the Health eNet. We continue to provide the Community Health Record, Referral platform as well as Direct Secure Messaging. If you need assistance for these, please contact Provider Services at (808) 441-1429. If you need assistance with resetting your password, please contact HHIE’s Help Desk at (808) 441-1374 or email@example.com.