Wilcox Hospital gets $1.1M for EMR

HONOLULU — Wilcox Memorial Hospital in Lihu‘e will receive $1.1 million as stimulus fund for achieving earlier this year Stage 1 Meaningful Use of Electronic Medical Records, according to a Hawai‘i Pacific Health press release.

Wilcox Memorial Hospital on June 30, along with Straub Clinic and Hospital, Pali Momi Medical Center and affiliates of Hawai‘i Pacific Health system became the first hospitals in the state to achieve Stage 1 EMR.

As such, these hospitals have been awarded a combined total of $4.3 million — Straub received $1.53 million and Pali Momi received $1.74 million — in stimulus funding under the Medicare Electronic Health Record incentive program.

“More than seven years ago, we recognized the important role technology would play in helping us prepare for the changes now becoming apparent as a result of the Affordable Care Act,” said Steve Robertson, spokesman for Hawai‘i Pacific Health, the state’s largest health care provider. “We spent $57 million to develop our EMR that now allows our organization to coordinate care among all of the facilities, physicians and health care teams. This stimulus money we received will help to offset a portion of our start-up costs.”

Hawai‘i Pacific Health’s EMR system is now fully operational across the system’s four hospitals and 49 outpatient clinics and service sites, allowing the organization to provide better health care for patients through markedly improved outcomes and greater efficiencies and placing it among the top five percent of hospitals nationwide in the adoption of EMR, states the release.

Straub, Pali Momi and Wilcox are among the first hospitals in the country to have received stimulus funds, placing them in the top 2.3 percent of hospitals nationwide.

Additionally, Hawai‘i Pacific Health and Kaiser Permanente Hawai‘i are the only local hospitals who have received their payments.

As of June, Medicare EHR incentive payments to hospitals in the U.S. totaled $107 million and only 46 hospitals in the nation were paid Medicare incentives before June 30.

“We aim to fundamentally change health care in Hawai‘i and at the national level,” Robertson said. 

The Medicare EHR Incentive Program was developed by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act as an effort to modernize America’s health care delivery system by encouraging doctors, hospitals and other health care providers to adopt and meaningfully use health information technology.

To qualify for the stimulus funding, eligible hospitals must demonstrate meaningful use of certified EHR or EMR technology through the submission of data for 14 Core Set Objectives, five Menu Set Objectives and 15 Clinic Quality Measures via the Medicare and Medicaid Services Attestation System.

Visit www.hawaiipacifichealth.org for more information.

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