Alternative Payment Models (APM)Future of Health CareMACRAMerit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)Performance ImprovementQualified Clinical Data Registry ReportingValue-Based Health Care
September 27, 2016

Boost Your MIPS Score with Care Coordination CPIAs—Your Patients Will Thank You

The reaction to MACRA Pick Your Pace speaks volumes about the state of preparedness for the upcoming Quality Payment Program (QPP). Some see Pick Your Pace as a reprieve, others see it as a parachute, and a select few see it as a way to get a head start on their peers. There’s a danger to being in the first two camps. Neither fully recognizes that CMS will differentiate practices on Resource Use. As a result, they have no impetus to implement Clinical Practice Improvement Activities (CPIAs) focusing on Care Coordination; but this is an area that will impact each…
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Alternative Payment Models (APM)MACRAPerformance ImprovementValue-Based Health Care
September 20, 2016

MACRA APM Risk: 5 Keys for Redefining Performance Improvement

Whatever relief providers felt after the recent CMS MACRA Pick Your Pace announcement, don’t be fooled. CMS has not, it seems, backed off its goals of pushing providers toward Risk, nor the interim and final quotas for participation. To the contrary—the announcement pointedly suggested that providers consider joining a risk-based Alternative Payment Model (APM) in 2017. But here’s the bigger issue: most existing ACOs have failed to meet cost targets, and the risk of losses for risk-based APMs will fall back on the participating providers. MACRA Pick your Pace should not be a time of rest. You should run, not…
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Alternative Payment Models (APM)MACRAMerit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)Performance ImprovementQualified Clinical Data Registry ReportingValue-Based Health Care
September 7, 2016

Back to School: Your Post-MACRA Study Guide for QPP Success

Back to school. That phrase prompts memories of making new friends (and catching up with old friends); carts full of notebooks, binders and pens; new classes; and, of course, abject terror. As the summer sun sets on PQRS, the Value Modifier (VM) and Meaningful Use (MU), it’s time for all of us to get into back-to-school mode, take the lessons we’ve learned and build on them for future success. Unfortunately, however, there’s an added challenge. Rather than having a season off to rest, regroup and ease into the new fall schedule, the transition from old programs to new is immediate…
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ACO ReportingAlternative Payment Models (APM)MACRAMerit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)Qualified Clinical Data Registry Reporting
August 23, 2016

ACO Under MACRA? Five Essential Takeaways

While Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) get a little boost under proposed MACRA Rules, this comes at a price. MACRA provides a 5 percent bonus and a MIPS reporting exemption for providers who participate in an Advanced Alternative Payment Models, the most common being a Stage 2 or 3 ACO—if and only if they assume a minimum requirement for risk. The deal is this: CMS wants providers to move toward Alternative Payment Plans with greater financial risk by living under the equivalent of a budget for their patients’ health care. That concept, which imposes downstream risk to physicians if the budget…
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Alternative Payment Models (APM)MACRAMeaningful UseMerit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)Performance ImprovementPQRS ReportingQualified Clinical Data Registry ReportingValue ModifierValue-Based Health CareValue-Based Payment Modifier
July 26, 2016

Closing the Book on PQRS (and Opening the MACRA Sequel)

Did you receive your confirmation email from the Physician Value Help Desk that your TIN was successfully registered for Group Practice reporting? If you did, which method did you select? Whether Registry, QCDR, EHR-Direct or the CMS Web Interface, you are officially locked into that choice, and it’s too late to back out. If you didn’t register, and are not in an ACO or another program that excuses you from PQRS (beware—this does NOT include Meaningful Use!), you’re still on the hook for PQRS and are locked into reporting at an individual level. Now that the registration deadline has passed,…
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ACO ReportingAlternative Payment Models (APM)MACRAMerit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)Performance ImprovementQualified Clinical Data Registry ReportingValue-Based Health Care
July 12, 2016

MIPS v APM: Which Is Your Best Bet?

If you’ve been watching the signals from CMS, you undoubtedly know by now that the current reimbursement structure under Medicare will end, to be replaced by a Quality Payment Program (QPP) that holds providers at risk for resource use and quality. The ensuing choices, however, are confusing. Providers can select one of two QPP tracks: Continue Fee for Service (FFS) and fall under the Merit Incentive Payment System (MIPS) or participate in an Alternative Payment Model (APM), such as a risk-based ACO. So, how do you know if MIPS or APM is the best way to go, and on what…
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Alternative Payment Models (APM)MACRAMerit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)Qualified Clinical Data Registry ReportingValue-Based Health Care
July 5, 2016

Succeed Under MACRA Medicare: How to Meet CPIAs for Full Credit in MIPS

Although many parts of MACRA’s MIPS continue Medicare’s existing quality programs, Clinical Performance Improvement Activities (CPIAs) forge a new direction. CPIAs are one of four MIPS components that practices must meet in order to obtain full reimbursement from Medicare. Forward planning is essential. It takes time to strategize and implement performance improvements, including partnerships and technology. To make this happen in 2017—the base year for performance measurement—providers must prepare before the MACRA rules are finalized. CPIAs are a unique sign of Medicare’s intent to hold practices accountable for improving health care outcomes. That’s a significant step in Medicare’s evolving role…
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Alternative Payment Models (APM)Clinical Data RegistryMACRAMeaningful UseMerit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)PQRS ReportingQualified Clinical Data Registry ReportingValue ModifierValue-Based Health Care
June 28, 2016

What’s the Score? Decoding the MIPS Scoring Methodology

CMS is calling MIPS the “First Step to a Fresh Start.” When it comes to scoring, that’s an understatement. Although MIPS’s foundations are rooted in existing programs, the MIPS algorithm is a significant departure from today’s quality, cost and health information technology scoring. Not only new, this scoring methodology is complex. Providers will receive one aggregated MIPS Composite Performance Score (CPS), but remember—this one score is going to account for three existing programs, plus a component for ongoing improvement. The real first step: learn how the scoring is done. With penalties starting at 4 percent the first year, growing to…
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Alternative Payment Models (APM)MACRAMeaningful UseMerit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)PQRS ReportingQualified Clinical Data Registry ReportingValue ModifierValue-Based Health CareValue-Based Payment Modifier
June 21, 2016

MACRA Medicare: Customize MIPS Strategy to Your Practice’s Attributes

Under MACRA Medicare’s Proposed Rules, CMS anticipates that as many as 90 percent of providers will be part of MIPS’s first year, beginning January 1, 2017. That includes providers in ACOs that don’t bear enough risk for exemption, providers who reported PQRS and Meaningful Use, as well as those who did nothing, “waiting out” Medicare’s plans. Not only is the wait over, but only about half a year remains until MIPS begins. And the challenges won’t fall evenly across provider groups. Size, specialty and support will weigh heavily into MIPS success. A customized MIPS strategy is your key to avoiding the…
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ACO ReportingAlternative Payment Models (APM)Future of Health CareMACRAMeaningful UseMerit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)Population HealthPQRS ReportingQualified Clinical Data Registry ReportingValue ModifierValue-Based Health Care
June 7, 2016

Proposed MACRA Rules: Your APM Strategy for Risk Readiness

If you chose not to participate in Medicare ACOs or Bundled Payments in recent years, CMS is planning to change your mind. Proposed MACRA Rules reveal a complex carrot-and-stick approach to inducing providers into risk models. Make no mistake: it’s just a matter of when, not if, you participate in one of the Alternative Payment Models (APMs). It will pay (literally) to begin planning your path to risk now. Here are five important provisions in the Proposed Rules that you need to understand: Full qualification as an Advanced APM earns a 5 percent lump sum bonus, exemption from participation in…
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