CHS under investigation over EHR adoption

Community Health Systems (CHS) is under investigation over its adoption of electronic health records (EHRs) and adherence to a federal program to fund the technology. The investigation was revealed in the company’s most recent quarterly earnings filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. CHS is one of the nation’s largest hospital systems, with 118 hospitals in 20 states.

Under the government’s meaningful use program, healthcare providers were given incentive payments to adopt EHR technology. The government has distributed more than $38 billion through the program since 2011, and hospitals that fail to demonstrate meaningful use of certified EHR technology are subject to payment adjustments.

CHS is currently facing a civil investigative demand related to its EHR adoption and the meaningful use program. The company stated it does not expect the investigation–and other pending legal proceedings–to have a financial impact but conceded there could be monetary penalties down the road. CHS has received more than $865 million in EHR incentive payments between 2011 and 2017, FierceHealthcare reported.

The revelation underscores heightened scrutiny around the program and EHR adoption.