Deadline for Seeking ePrescribing Exemption Extended to Nov. 8

We’ve just gotten word that CMS has extended the deadline for physicians to file for an exemption from the ePrescribing penalty to Tuesday, November 8, after hearing from the AMA that many physicians were having difficulty filing for the exemption, because of technical difficulties with the federal government’s website.

To get an extension, you must apply online. No other form of request will be accepted. To request an exemption, submit this online form.

The exemption categories are the same :

  • You’re already registered in a Medicare or Medicare electronic health record incentive program
  • You prescribe infrequently. Either you wrote fewer than 10 prescriptions during the first six months of 2011, or had fewer than 100 Part B claims with codes and services that fall within ePrescribing measures during the first six months of 2011.
  • You practice in an area without high-speed internet access.
  • You practice in an area without enough pharmacies that can handle ePrescribing.
  • You cannot participate in the ePrescribing program because of limitations of local, state or federal law or regulation.

The physician must personally submit the application for an exemption – it cannot be done by someone else on your behalf.

If you’re not sure whether you qualify for an exemption, the AMA suggests that you apply anyway. There is no appeals process after the fact.

For more detailed information, download the AMA’s information sheet. (.pdf, 3 pages)

Apply for the exemption here.

What to Do if You Have Problems Accessing the Hardship Exemption Web Page

Some providers are having difficulty with accessing the Communication Support Page.  After doing some research they found that the problem is related to an issue with the internet browser.  CMS is asking eligible professionals to take the step below if they are unsuccessful in accessing the Communication Support Page when trying to submit their Hardship Exemption Request.

After typing in the above link, in the internet browser, select Tools/Internet Options/Advanced.  Scroll down toward the bottom and locate the “Use TLS 1.0” choice.  Place a checkmark in the “Use TLS 1.0.”  Click OK. Attempt to access the site again.

If you still have trouble accessing the site, the QualityNet Help Desk may be reached at (866) 288-8912 or email from 7am to 7pm CT, Monday through Friday.  Due to the high volume of calls that the QualityNet Help Desk has been receiving there may be a waiting period.

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