A blog dedicated to advancing healthcare quality.

Are You Ready for MIPS?

Posted by Katy Bennett-Blumer on Mar 23, 2017 9:00:00 AM

The time is here! The first performance year for the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) began January 1, 2017 with the first payment year implementing in 2019. It’s important for your organization to prepare now to maximize incentives and avoid penalties on your Medicare Part B payments.

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Primaris to help rural healthcare providers navigate federal Quality Payment Program

Posted by Rachel Verslues on Mar 6, 2017 9:00:00 AM

In a recent press releasePrimaris announced that it will provide on-the-ground training and education about the Quality Payment Program (QPP) as a subcontractor to TMF Health Quality Institute (TMF). TMF, a leading non-profit health care consulting company based in Austin, has been contracted to help small medical practices in generally underserved areas prepare for and participate in the new QPP, which was established by the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA).

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Improving Efficiency is Vital During MIPS' First Year

Posted by Adam Voight on Dec 15, 2016 10:00:00 AM

Improving Efficiency is Vital-1.jpg
Right now, a lot of healthcare providers are breathing a sigh of relief because of the unexpected flexibility that was built into the final MACRA rule. Requirements for the first year of MACRA are more relaxed than many thought they would be. Rather than having to submit a full year’s worth of MIPS data in 2017, providers can choose to submit only partial data without being penalized. Also, providers participating in MIPS that are not ready to begin collecting data on January 1 can choose to begin collecting data anytime up until October 2, 2017. The point is, CMS made some allowances to help providers transition to MACRA’s new Quality Payment Program (QPP). Below is a look at one of those allowances in particular: the delayed inclusion of “cost” as a MIPS evaluation category.

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Physicians Are Behind Schedule on MACRA Preparations

Posted by Rachel Verslues on Dec 8, 2016 10:00:00 AM

On January 1, 2017 the first MACRA reporting period will begin. Considering CMS says that more than 700,000 clinicians are expected to participate in MACRA’s new reporting program next year, it is surprising and a little alarming that as recently as July of 2016, half of surveyed physicians said they had never heard of MACRA (the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015).

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MIPS CPIAs: How to Apply them to Your Practice

Posted by Janell Royer on Dec 6, 2016 10:00:00 AM

As we saw in the final Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) rulings the beginning of this month, there were some changes made to performance categories. Several of those changes took place to the Clincical Practice Improvement Activities (CPIA).

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More Accountability for Health Outcomes is Motivation to Focus on Population Health Management

Posted by Rachel Verslues on Nov 24, 2016 10:00:00 AM

The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) was passed in April of 2015, and from the very beginning, physicians have had conflicting feelings about the healthcare law. On one hand, nearly everyone is happy to say goodbye to the flawed Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula, so there is reason to celebrate MACRA and the replacement of SGR. On the other hand, MACRA and the Quality Payment Program (QPP) are pushing large scale changes onto physicians, and there are legitimate concerns about whether or not practices can survive in the new reimbursement era.

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Topics: population health, MACRA, MIPS

MACRA Ruling Buys Time for Workflow Adjustments Aimed at Managing Population Health

Posted by Rachel Verslues on Nov 17, 2016 10:00:00 AM

CMS recently released the final MACRA ruling. It contains detailed information about the Quality Payment Program (QPP) that will launch its first reporting phase in January of 2017. While it is helpful to finally have more information about the planned changes to Medicare reimbursements, the 2,000+ page final rule is not exactly light reading. Thankfully, CMS also released several other resources, like the new website for the Quality Payment Program, that offer need-to-know details in easier to digest portions.

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Topics: population health, quality improvement, MACRA, MIPS

Basic MACRA Terms and Concepts Primary Care Physicians Need to Know

Posted by Rachel Verslues on Nov 10, 2016 10:00:00 AM

The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) and the Quality Payment Program (QPP) are bringing waves of change to the world of primary care. If you work in primary care, and you have felt uneasy about MACRA at any point, you are not alone. There are legitimate questions and concerns about how the healthcare law will impact practices, and there is an abundance of compliance information to absorb. It is a lot for any healthcare provider to wrap their head around.

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Topics: value-based care, MACRA, APM, MIPS

Are You Using Your QRUR & PQRS Feedback Reports to Guide Your Quality Improvement Efforts?

Posted by Rachel Verslues on Oct 25, 2016 10:00:00 AM

Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) Feedback reports and Quality and Resource Use Reports (QRUR) reports provide valuable improvement information that can be used to improve the quality of patient care. 

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Topics: PQRS, quality improvement, MIPS

Make Efficiency Improvements to Prepare for MIPS

Posted by Rachel Verslues on Sep 1, 2016 10:00:00 AM

The first performance year for the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) begins in only a few short months. MIPS is one of the two pathways clinicians can take under the MACRA Quality Payment Program, and initially it is expected to be the more popular of the two options. MIPS replaces aspects of other disjointed reporting and payment programs (including the Physician Quality Reporting System, the Value Modifier Program, and the Medicare Electronic Health Record Incentive Program) and will attempt to blend them into something that is much more fluid. As clinicians ready their practices for MIPS they need to prepare for success in the program’s four categories: clinical quality, meaningful use, resource use, and clinical practice improvement.

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Topics: operational efficiency, MACRA, MIPS

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