CMS Rule Coverage from the CEO

Don Balasa

As of January 1, 2017, credentialed medical assistants (in addition to licensed health care professionals) are permitted to enter medication, laboratory, and diagnostic imaging orders into the electronic health record (EHR) and have such entry count toward meeting the meaningful use thresholds under only the Medicaid EHR Incentive Program. (This is an update to the September 5, 2012, rule of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services [CMS], which stated that such order entry would count toward meeting meaningful use thresholds under both the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs.) 

For more information on this CMS update, see the following article by AAMA CEO and Legal Counsel Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA:

MACRA Final Rule: Changes Do Not Eliminate Order Entry Provisions
(January/February 2017)
Also available as a PDF


Archive of Articles on CMS Rulings

Addressing Recent Concerns About Order Entry
(Published in Legal Eye: On Medical Assisting)

Who Can Enter Order for Meaningful Use? An Evolving Challenge for Practice Managers
(Published in the July/August 2015 issue of The Journal of Medical Practice Management)

CMS EHR Rule Benefits Physicians
(Published in the Winter 2014 issue of Cornhusker Family Physician)

For additional videos and supplemental presentations, see the Videos page.

Legal Eye on Medical Assisting

Press Release

Single-Page Flyer

Related CMA Today Public Affairs Articles


EHR Incentive Programs
AAMA comments on the CMS Stage 3 proposed rule
(September/October 2015)
Also available as a PDF

Proposed CMS rule is favorable for CMAs (AAMA)
(May/June 2015)
Also available as a PDF

The CMS order entry rule
What educators need to know
(March/April 2015)
Also available as a PDF

How medical assistants can meet the CMS meaningful use requirements
(November/December 2014)
Also available as a PDF

CMS audits and credentialing issues for order entry
(May/June 2014)
Also available as a PDF

CMS official affirms AAMA positions on meaningful use
(November/December 2013)
Also available as a PDF

FAQs about the CMS Rule for Meaningful Use Order Entry
(July/August 2013)

AAMA Triumphs in CMS Order Entry Rule
CE test available on the e-Learning Center
(November/December 2012)

AAMA Comments on the Proposed CMS Rule 
(May/June 2012)