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San Francisco Marin Medical Society Blog

Meaningful Use Exemption and Extended Assistance

Additional relief for eligible providers participating in the meaningful use program has arrived in two forms: expanded payment adjustment exemptions and extended assistance.

Expanded Exemptions

Providers who are eligible for the Medicare EHR Incentive Program and have been unable to successfully demonstrate meaningful use for either the 2013 or 2014 reporting year due to circumstances beyond their control may apply for a hardship exemption. The deadline to apply is July 1, 2014. An organization whose hardship application is approved would be exempt from payment adjustments which take effect in 2015. CMS is currently accepting applications from both new and returning program participants whose circumstance meets one of the following hardship exemptions:

  • Lack of infrastructure
  • New Eligible Professionals
  • Unforeseen and/or uncontrollable circumstances
  • Lack of face-to-face interaction
  • Lack of control over availability of EHR certified technology
  • 2014 EHR Vendor Issues

Visit the CMS Payment Adjustment and Hardship Exemption webpage for downloadable tip sheets that detail the qualifications of each hardship exemption. The webpage also includes a link to the application and further instructions.

Extended Assistance

Eligible professionals may still seek subsidized assistance from CalHIPSO to meet meaningful use in 2014. CalHIPSO is the federally funded regional extension center serving clinicians in all California counties except Orange and LA. CalHIPSO is continuing to provide technical services through December 31, 2014 to both current and new members. However, there is limited availability for new enrollments. Contact CalHIPSO for more information at (510) 302-3364 or email organization name, contact info, zip code and NPIs to

Additional Information

Tip Sheet from CMS (updated March 2014)

Hardship Exemption Application

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