Eligible Professionals (EPs) and Eligible Hospitals (EHs) could easily lead to errors in meaningful use (MU) attestations. If audited these errors would turn up based on pre- and post-payment attestations and separate the knowledge gaps from willful actions.
As for looking at this case a grand jury indictment is not evidence of guilt, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.” For the details of the indictment we have the FBI to thank:
“Joe White, 66, of Cameron, Texas, was indicted by a federal grand jury on January 22, 2014, and charged with making false statements to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and aggravated identity theft.”
“According to the indictment, on November 20, 2012, White falsely attested to CMS that Shelby Regional Medical Center (Shelby Regional) met the meaningful use requirements for the 2012 fiscal year. However, Shelby Regional relied on paper records throughout the fiscal year and only minimally used electronic health records. To give the false appearance that the hospital was actually using Certified Electronic Health Record Technology, White directed its software vendor and hospital employees to manually input data from paper records into the electronic health record (EHR) software, often months after the patient was discharged and after the end of the fiscal year.”
“The indictment further alleges that White falsely attested to the hospital’s meaningful use by using another person’s name and information without that individual’s consent or authorization. As a result of the false attestation, CMS paid Shelby Regional $785,655. In total, hospitals operated by Dr. Mahmood, including Shelby Regional, were paid $16,794,462.66 by the Medicaid and Medicare EHR incentive programs for fiscal years 2011 and 2012.”
“If convicted, White faces up to five years in federal prison for making a false statement and up to two years in federal prison for aggravated identity theft.”
As more and more federal stimulus money is made available to providers to adopt Electronic Health Record systems and meaningfully use them our firm is expecting to see many more cases like this case.
If you need help with a Meaningful Use Audit, Meaningful Use Appeal, Mock Audit or Have Questions on Attesting for Meaningful Use we would be happy to help you to avoid these pitfalls. Feel free to contact Vanessa Bisceglie MBA, B.S. with EHR & Practice Management Consultants, Inc. at 800-376-0212 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.