More than 3,000 California docs sign up for EHR help

By Bernie Monegain
07:59 AM

More than 3,000 primary care providers have enrolled in the California Health Information Partnership and Services Organization (CalHIPSO) since last June to receive help implementing electronic health records.

The care providers include physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and midwives.

CalHIPSO is one of 62 Regional Extension Centers nationwide, founded last year with $31.2million in funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, to assist providers adopt EHR systems. CalHIPSO is the first Regional Extension Center in the country to sign up 3,000 providers and has consistently led the nation in provider enrollment.
"CalHIPSO recognizes how challenging electronic health record implementation can be, and we are incredibly pleased that so many providers have already enrolled to receive our assistance," said Speranza Avram, executive director of CalHIPSO. 
CalHIPSO is tasked by the federal government with assisting 6,187 primary care providers achieve meaningful use of electronic health records by 2014. CalHIPSO focuses on serving the healthcare safety net, including primary care providers working in small private practices, primary care clinics, public and rural hospital ambulatory clinics, and practices serving medically underserved patient populations. Eligible providers who achieve meaningful use will receive incentive payments of up to $44,000 to $63,750 through Medicare or Medi-Cal beginning this year.
CalHIPSO delivers services to its members through ten Local Extension Centers that bring health information technology expertise to local communities across California. CalHIPSO is waiving membership fees for priority primary care providers who enroll prior to June 30, 2011.