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Electronic Health Records

March 11, 2011

Free assistance in understanding Medicare and Medicaid incentive payment programs is available for most primary care providers with prescription privileges who practice in one of these specialties: adolescent medicine, family practice, general practice, geriatrics, gynecology, internal medicine, OB-GYN or pediatrics. To apply for up to one year of free assistance in EHR adoption and/or achieving meaningful use, go to www.citiasc.org and click on “Apply Online.” Nearly three fourths of the available 1000 slots have been committed in the first six months with more than 100 applications coming in each month, so interested eligible providers must sign up soon.
The Center for Information Technology Implementation Assistance (CITIA) is South Carolina’s regional extension center for health information technology (HIT). South Carolina primary care physicians now have the direct, local assistance they need to:

  • Implement an electronic health record (EHR) system.
  • Integrate the EHR system into the patient care process.
  • Position themselves to receive Medicare and/or Medicaid incentive payments.

Who is eligible for CITIA support?

CITIA will prioritize services to primary care physicians, OB-GYNs, general internists and pediatricians working in practices with less than 10 prescribing providers per practice site. Priority will also be given to rural health clinics, community health centers, critical access hospitals and other primary care providers working in an uninsured, underinsured or medically underserved area.  

What types of services are available to providers? 

  •  Information about the effective strategies and practices to select, implement and meaningfully use certified EHR technology to improve quality and value of health care.
  • Help in assessing the health IT needs of your practice and help selecting an EHR vendor product.
  • Selection of preferred EHR vendor products vetted by an expert committee and negotiation of group pricing and purchase contracts with preferred vendors.
  • Support in the EHR implementation process in your practice, including individualized and on-site coaching and consultation.
  • Consultation regarding practice workflow redesign necessary to achieve meaningful use of your certified EHR.
  • Information regarding best practices with respect to the privacy and security of personal health information.
  • Review of your EHR and support to help your practice achieve meaningful use as defined by Medicare and Medicaid regulations and guidance.

Who will be providing these consulting services?

Because CITIA is a statewide partnership, you will be receiving services from one of three groups — The SC Office of Rural Health, the SC Primary Healthcare Association or The Carolinas Center for Medical Excellence. 

What is the cost of this program?

This program is initially supported by a cooperative agreement with the Federal Department of Health and Human Services so it doesn’t cost those who join the program prior to May 2011 anything to participate.  

Can CITIA provide services to me if I don’t have an EHR? If I do have an EHR?

Regardless of where you are on your path to EHR implementation, CITIA can help you.
For an online application and additional information, visit www.CITIA.org.


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