Notice For Provider Organizations: Mass HIway Attestation Forms Now Available

Overview


The online Year 1 and Year 2 Mass HIway Attestation Forms are now available. Provider Organizations are required to submit the applicable form to attest to how the organization is meeting its requirement to connect to the to the Mass HIway in accordance with state regulation 101 CMR 20.00: Health Information Exchange (Mass HIway Regulations). Of particular interest, all Acute Care Hospitals, Large and Medium Medical Ambulatory Practices, and Large Community Health Centers in Massachusetts are required to submit their attestation letter by July 1, 2018.

In Depth


As you may be aware, the online Year 1 and Year 2 Mass HIway Attestation Forms are now available. The forms can be accessed here. As a reminder, Provider Organizations are required to submit the applicable form to attest to how the organization is meeting its requirement to connect to the to the Mass HIway in accordance with state regulation 101 CMR 20.00: Health Information Exchange (Mass HIway Regulations). FAQs regarding the Mass HIway Regulations and the Attestation Forms can be found on the Mass HIway website.

Of particular interest, all Acute Care Hospitals, Large and Medium Medical Ambulatory Practices, and Large Community Health Centers in Massachusetts are required to submit their attestation letter by July 1, 2018. Submission guidelines are included in the Attestation Forms. The Mass HIway prefers the online method of submitting this form rather than the paper version.

As an important note, online Mass HIway Attestation Forms must be completed and submitted in one session; once begun on the online portal, the forms cannot be saved for later completion. Accordingly, the Mass HIway recommends a Provider Organization review the PDF version of the appropriate Attestation Form to ensure the Provider Organization has all the information needed to complete the online form before beginning the process. Providers can access the updated 2018 Attestation Form PDFs here: Year 1 Attestation Form, Year 2 Attestation Form or by emailing MassHIwayAttestation@state.ma.us.

We have included additional background below, including definitions for the Provider Organizations as set forth in the Mass HIway Regulations. A member of your McDermott team would be happy to assist you in filing your Attestation Letters or to answer any questions you may have about the process or requirements.

Additional Background

The Mass HIway Regulations implement the components of Massachusetts General Law (M.G.L.) Chapter 1181 that pertain to the Mass HIway: the statewide, state-sponsored Health Information Exchange (HIE) operated by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS) that enables the secure exchange of information between Mass HIway users.

The main purpose of the Mass HIway Regulation is to establish requirements for organizations that use the Mass HIway, which includes the requirement for providers in Massachusetts to implement a fully interoperable electronic health record (EHR) system that connects to the Mass HIway.

Per Section 5.2 of the Mass HIway Policies and Procedures (the common set of rules that govern access to and use of the Mass HIway), Attestation Forms are due by July 1 following each Provider Organization’s first required Mass HIway connection date (per Schedule A of 101 CMR 20.09).

For the following three groups of Provider Organizations, the “Year 1” and “Year 2” requirement to connect to the Mass HIway must be accomplished by these dates:

(1) Acute Care Hospitals by February 10, 2017;

(2) Large and Medium Medical Ambulatory Practices by January 1, 2018;

(3) Large Community Health Centers by January 1, 2018, and Small Community Health Centers by January 1, 2019. (101 CMR 20.08 and 20.09)

Definitions of the Provider Organizations listed above are included in the Mass HIway Regulations and are as follows: (101 CMR 20.06)

(1) Acute Care Hospital. A hospital licensed under M.G.L. c. 111, s. 51, and the teaching hospital of the University of Massachusetts Medical School, which contains a majority of medical-surgical, pediatric, obstetric and maternity beds, as defined by the department. Hospitals that meet this definition of acute care hospital can be found in the Massachusetts Licensed or Certified Health Care Facility/Agency Listing, which is maintained by the Department of Public Health and is publicly available on the Department of Public Health’s website.

(2) Community Health Center.

(a) An organization that is either:

1. A “Federally Qualified Health Center” or a “Federally Qualified Health Center Look-Alike” as defined by the federal Department of Health and Human Services Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) and operating in conformance with Section 330 of United States Public Law 95-626; or

2. An organization that files cost reports as a community health center, as requested by the Health Policy Commission within the Executive Office for Administration and Finance

(b) For the purposes of 101 CMR 20.00*, the following definitions of large and small community health centers apply:1. Large Community Health Center: A community health center where 10 or more licensed providers participate in providing health care for patients.2. Small Community Health Center: A community health center where fewer than 10 licensed providers participate in providing health care for patients.
(c) In Community Health Center, licensed providers are limited to include medical doctors, doctors of osteopathy, nurse practitioners, or physician assistants.

(3) Medical Ambulatory Practice.(a) An organization in Massachusetts that includes licensed providers who provide primary or specialty outpatient health care services to patients. In Medical Ambulatory Practice, licensed providers are limited to include medical doctors, doctors of osteopathy, nurse practitioners or physician assistants. Medical Ambulatory Practice does not include Community Health Centers, as defined in 101 CMR 20.06 (2), and does not include ambulatory practices whose primary purpose is to provide behavioral health services. In Medical Ambulatory Practice, “outpatient health care services” are defined as health care services that do not require an overnight stay.
(b) For the purposes of 101 CMR 20.00*, the following definitions of large and medium medical ambulatory practices apply:1. Large Medical Ambulatory Practice. A medical ambulatory practice where more than 50 licensed providers participate in providing health care for patients.2. Medium Medical Ambulatory Practice. A medical ambulatory practice where 10 to 50 licensed providers participate in providing health care for patients.3. Small Medical Ambulatory Practice. A medical ambulatory practice where fewer than 10 licensed providers participate in providing health care for patients. Small medical ambulatory practices includes medical ambulatory practices where only one licensed provider participates in providing health care for patients.

*Note: For the purposes of 101 CMR 20.00, the applicability of the provider organization definitions shall be determined by calculating the number of licensed providers that provide health care services to patients on behalf of the provider organization in the month of June prior to that organization’s initial required connection date to the Mass HIway, regardless of employment status.