Provider incentives approach $6 billion

Providers approach $6 billion in EHR incentives

More than 6,300 unique eligible professionals (EPs) have been paid an aggregate of more than $109 million through June in the current program year of the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs, according to the most recent figures made available by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

The total number of unique EPs who have received payments since the programs' inception surpassed 293,000 as of the end of June. Those EPs have collectively earned nearly $6 billion.

Medicare-eligible MDs or DOs took in most of that total, about $3.4 billion, followed by Medicaid-eligible MDs, who received about $1.6 billion. The rest went to (in descending order): nurse practitioners, optometrists, podiatrists, chiropractors, nurse-midwives, physicians assistants and dentists.

Eligible hospitals topped $722 million in incentives received so far in the current program year, bringing the total incentive outlay to more than $831 million through the first half of 2013.

Cumulatively, CMS has paid over $15.5 billion to EPs and eligible hospitals through the parallel Medicare/Medicaid programs since 2011.

More than 269,000 EPs have registered for the Medicare EHR Incentive Program as of the end of June 2013. More than 131,000 EPs have registered for the Medicaid EHR Incentive Program through June 2013.

Since January 2011, 49 states have launched their Medicaid EHR Incentive programs, according to CMS.