CMS aims to make it easier for docs to collect incentives

By Mary Mosquera
01:52 PM

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is expanding its current Medicare provider enrollment system to make it easier for physicians to register to receive meaningful use incentives.

It awarded a $1.6 million contract to CGI Federal Inc. to develop the necessary additional functions for the Provider Enrollment Chain Ownership System (PECOS), which manages, tracks and validates the enrollment of providers and suppliers in the Medicare program.

Physicians and hospitals must attest that they have met the requirements for meaningful use of electronic health records for 90 days to qualify for the incentives that will be available in 2011.

"(CGI's) work is in the context of CMS' proposed rule and interfaces with a variety of provisions," said a CMS spokesman.

The agency defined the requirements for the first stage of meaningful use in a notice of proposed rulemaking earlier this year.

The modification of the PECOS system will take about 10 months, according to a notice published April 7 on the Federal Business Opportunities Web site.