Hardship Applications Available for Eligible Hospitals & CAHs

Hardship Applications Available for Eligible Hospitals & CAHs

Hardship exception applications for eligible hospitals and Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs) who were eligible to participate in the 2017 performance year of the Medicare EHR Incentive Program, also known as Meaningful Use (MU), are now available.

Who does not need to submit a hardship exception application for MU 2017?


  • Eligible hospitals and CAHs who successfully demonstrated MU in 2017
  • Eligible hospitals who obtained a new CMS Certification Number (CCN) between October 1, 2016 and July 1, 2018
  • New CAHs (as defined by the Stage 2 Final Rule 42 CFR Part 413 §413.70(C)) in the 2017 payment adjustment year that have not previously operated as CAHs

If you were unable to meet 2017 MU and none of the above exceptions apply, the submission deadline for the hardship application is July 1, 2018 for eligible hospitals and November 30, 2018 for CAHs. To be approved, it is important to note that eligible hospitals must prove that the circumstance for their submission was beyond their control (for example insufficient internet connectivity or hospital closure).

For both eligible hospitals and CAHs, if approved, the hardship application will only be valid for the year submitted. To claim any additional hardships, eligible hospitals and CAHs must submit a new application. Supporting documentation must be attached at the time of submission to receive approval for the hardship exception. All determinations made by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on the hardship application cannot be appealed.

Eligible hospitals and CAHs can either submit their application and supporting documentation to ehrhardship@cms.hhs.gov or mail to CMS EHR Hardship, 7500 Security Boulevard, Mail Stop S3-02-01, Baltimore, Maryland 21244-1850. CMS strongly encourages those submitting for a hardship, to submit electronically to avoid any penalties. Be sure to retain a copy of your completed hardship application for your records!

Still have questions about the hardship application? We are here to help – contact us here and we will be in touch!

Author: Alex Taylor, Marketing Manager, Health Insights

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