One thing everyone seems to agree on is that genuine Health Transformation can’t happen until facilities and doctors get patients more involved in their own care.
The engagement of patients and their families in patients’ health care is a prominent goal of the EHR Incentive Program. CMS requires providers to meet several Patient Engagement benchmarks that will have a positive impact on the quality of care the public receives.
This policy priority aims to improve patients’ understanding of their health and related conditions so they take a more active role in their health care. It also encourages the involvement of patients’ families, as many patients depend on their support.
New Patient Engagement Meaningful Use Objectives
There are now two new Meaningful Use objectives related to Patient Engagement for Stage 2. One objective specifies online data access for patients. This replaces two related Stage 1 objectives: providing electronic copies of health information or discharge instructions, and providing timely access to health information. The other objective requires EPs to use secure electronic messaging to communicate with patients.
New: Data Access
- Objective: Provide patients the ability to view online, download, and transmit their health information within 4 business days of the information being available to the eligible provider (EP).
- Measure 1: More than 50% of all unique patients seen by the EP during the electronic health record (EHR) reporting period are provided timely (available to the patient within 4 business days after the information is available to the EP) online access to their health information.
- Measure 2: More than 5% of all unique patients seen by the EP during the EHR reporting period (or their authorized representatives) view, download, or transmit to a third party their health information.
New: Secure Messaging
- Objective: Use secure electronic messaging to communicate with patients on relevant health information.
- Measure: Under the Stage 2 objective to use secure electronic messaging to communicate with patients on relevant health information, a secure message must be sent using the electronic messaging function of Certified EHR technology by more than 5% of unique patients seen by an EP during the EHR reporting period.
Updated Patient Engagement Meaningful Use Objectives
EPs now have 1 day (instead of 3 days) to provide patients with a clinical summary. The content of the clinical summary has been updated to include demographic information, smoking status, recommended patient decision aids, and a care plan field that includes goals and instructions.The patient education objective, previously a menu item, is now a core requirement. Also, the clinical summary objective has been updated.
Updated: Clinical Summaries
- Objective: Clinical summaries provided to patients within 1 business day for more than 50% of office visits.
- Measure: Clinical summaries provided to patients within 1 business day for more than 50% of office visits.
Updated: Patient Education
- Objective: Use certified EHR technology to identify patient-specific education resources and provide those resources to the patient if appropriate.
- Measure: Patient-specific education resources identified by certified EHR technology are provided to patients for more than 10% of all unique patient with office visits seen by the EP during the EHR reporting period.
ONC has developed several tools to assist your efforts in Patient Engagement:
- Using e-Health Tools to Engage Patients and Caregivers
- Using Secure Electronic Messaging to Support Patient and Family Engagement
- Providing Patients in Ambulatory Settings With a Clinical Summary of the Office Visit
- Providing Patients with Patient-Specific Education Resources
- Using Patient Portals in Ambulatory Care Settings
- Frequently Asked Questions About Secure Electronic Messaging (for patients)
- Frequently Asked Questions About the Clinical Summary (for patients)
- Frequently Asked Questions About the Patient Portal (for patients)