You’re not alone! Social media is filled with comments and questions from EPs – just like yourself – who are knee-deep in Meaningful Use core measure challenges.
We’ve heard from many doctors that the most challenging core measure in MU Stage 2 is Measure 17. Let’s examine it more closely.
Simply put, Measure 17 requires that you use secure messaging to communicate with patients on relevant health information, and give them the opportunity to view and download their medical information. Specifically, 5% of your patients must send you a secure electronic communication.
The key concept behind this goal is Patient Engagement.
So why is CM17 so tough to attest? In our opinion it’s likely to be difficult because this measure is dependent on your patients taking action rather than you quantifying something. In other words, it’s out of your control. Or is it? How might you engage your patients after they’ve left your office?
Answer: Give them a good reason to want to communicate with you electronically. Create opportunities for them to message you and avoid lengthy hold times on the phone. Enable your patients to set appointments or request prescription refills electronically which gives them the freedom to address their own needs, regardless of your business hours. This can all be accomplished with your patient portal.
Remember the long term purpose of Meaningful Use is to provide better patient care by standardizing medical records for better sharing, and to engage the patient in their care. This is an excellent step toward that.