Today, while wearing my hat as the Board Chairman of the North Texas Regional Extension Center, I am writing a message primarily to my colleagues who practice medicine across North Texas. I am sharing this message through my blog, however, because others may be interested to see and hear what is happening at the grassroots level of local and regional health IT initiatives:
To my physician colleagues across North Texas,
On behalf of the volunteer physician board members of the North Texas Regional Extension Center (NTREC), I am writing to inform you that registration for the federal electronic health record (EHR) incentive program has begun and that the money is already flowing. In January, for example, two Oklahoma physicians at the Gastorf Family Clinic of Durant, OK, received $21,250 each for having implemented a certified EHR. If you are considering making the jump to an EHR, or if you already use one, you may become eligible for EHR incentives up to $44,000 under Medicare or $63,750 under Medicaid by meeting “meaningful use” requirements.
NTREC receives federal grant funds for providing on-site technical consulting to enrolled physicians who are selecting, implementing or using an EHR. This federal subsidy allows NTREC to charge primary care physicians only $300 for consulting services valued at $5,000.
NTREC is focused on helping you:
- Select and implement a certified EHR (or upgrade your current EHR to a certified version),
- Optimize your practice workflow,
- Achieve meaningful use,
- Qualify for EHR incentives, and
- Obtain CME credit hours along the way
I am happy to report that NTREC services were successfully launched four months ago. Since then, 289 physicians have enrolled for services and another 370 physicians have enrollment contracts in progress. Our goal is to provide services to more than 1,500 physicians in North Texas by the end of 2011. Our operational plans will enable us to scale physician services to even higher levels if needed to meet physician demand.
The federal EHR incentive program and these discounted NTREC consulting services are unprecedented and genuine. Please call NTREC to enroll and set an appointment for on-site consulting at (469) 648-5140 or by visiting www.ntrec.org. The NTREC’s dedicated team of experts will be considerate of your valuable time and show you how they can help you identify and meet your unique needs.
If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
Brown Lupton Health Center
Texas Christian University