The Urban Myth about Electronic Health Records

December 10, 2014

This has become one of the “urban myths” in our industry and it is time to try to set it straight:

Providers who are deemed Eligible Providers (EP) are mandated to have Electronic Health Records (EHRs). Eligible Provider Services (EPS) are services where treatment is provided by Physicians, Physician Assistants, Nurse Practioners, etc. or their equivalents or dentists who receive Medicare or Medicaid.

The EP list differs slightly for Medicare and Medicaid.  Medicare reimbursements will be reduced if an EP does not adopt an EHR by the deadline.  Medicaid providers who are Eligible Providers also are mandated, but reimbursement is not affected should they not adopt EHRs.  Since many mental health and intellectual disability providers do not employ Eligible Providers, they are not mandated to have EHRs. 

There are some states, such as Minnesota, which has passed legislation that broadens the definition of the type of health care provider who is required to adopt EHRs.  Virginia has not done so.