Academic Medical CentersConsumers & PatientsFuture of Health Care
February 21, 2018

How Safe is Medicare? What To Know About White House Budget Proposals

Health care providers may be lulled into believing that Medicare budget cuts proposed by the White House last week won’t happen. Media reports have repeatedly emphasized that the budget is simply a policy proposal. Congress alone has the authority to determine spending limits and allocate funds. But labeling this budget—and the Medicare proposals in it—as “dead on arrival” is a mistake. For one, the proposal includes efforts aimed at reducing drug prices and fighting the opioid epidemic. But these are minor political enticements, compared to the proposed Medicare cuts labeled as “Reducing Wasteful Federal Spending.” Those are the most significant ideas…
Read More
Alternative Payment Models (APM)MACRAMerit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)Value-Based Health Care
November 8, 2017

The 2018 Quality Payment Program Final Rule: What You Need to Know

Halloween may be over, but CMS has given us one more scare—a 1,653-page Final Rule for Year 2 of the Quality Payment Program. The Proposed Rule represents the next phase of the transition into a full-fledged Quality Payment Program. For eligible providers, more is required to avoid penalties, but CMS has defined the process to favor those making efforts to avoid penalties. Of course, the program is designed to facilitate improvement—not just to meet a minimum participation threshold. Success will not be quantified in terms of avoiding penalties but, rather, by demonstrating exceptional performance and improvement. With these guidelines established…
Read More
Academic Medical CentersFuture of Health CareMACRAValue-Based Health Care
September 13, 2017

Can Academic Medical Centers Be a Force for Health Care Reform?

Can Academic Medical Centers (AMCs) survive Value-Based Health Care and its metamorphosis to financial risk? That’s the question many industry watchers have been asking for several years, as margins have slimmed and some university-based programs have sold off their facilities and physician groups to private interests. But a number of economic and policy impacts are generating greater urgency regarding the status of AMCs, threatening their ability to continue their historical three-part mission of teaching, research and specialized patient care. While AMCs have been targeted as “high rollers” by those seeking to control health care costs, we should be very concerned…
Read More
ACO ReportingAlternative Payment Models (APM)Clinical Data RegistryPQRS ReportingValue ModifierValue-Based Health CareValue-Based Payment Modifier
April 5, 2016

If Your Solution to PQRS Reporting Is an ACO, Think Again

Problems with PQRS reporting this year? As a Registry that works with groups ranging from Academic Medical Centers to solo practitioners, we’ve seen the whole gamut of issues. While there are no quick and easy solutions (sorry), the biggest myth we’re hearing this year is that you can solve all your PQRS problems by forming an Accountable Care Organization (ACO). It’s certainly true that if your ACO reports successfully—and most do—you are not required also to report for PQRS. But before you take the huge organizational leap to forming or joining an ACO, you’d best read the fine print. For…
Read More
Clinical Data RegistryFuture of Health CarePerformance ImprovementValue-Based Health Care
December 22, 2015

Happy New Year: Higher Patient Financial Responsibility Risks More Provider Debt

A few weeks ago, we learned that the rate of health care spending has escalated, with a 5.3 percent gain in 2014—accounting for 17.5 per cent of the U.S. Gross Domestic Product. And, according to the Kaiser Foundation, this predicted upward trend shows no signs of abating anytime soon. At some point, this cost burden on the economy is unsustainable. So where is the outcry? The relative silence around the trend, compared with prior decades, reveals a shift in financial responsibility from employers to individuals, which just might crack the foundations of the health care system. Consumers are Paying More…
Read More
ACO ReportingClinical Data RegistryFuture of Health CareMeaningful UseMerit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)
November 10, 2015

Questions You Should Ask (or Should Have) About Medicare’s Alternative Payment Models

Are you prepared for your risk or reward under Medicare payment reforms? It’s hard to give up current revenues that reward volume, sooner than absolutely necessary. That’s the dilemma facing all providers who realize that Medicare is serious about moving 50 percent of its provider reimbursement to Alternative Payment Models (APMs) by the end of 2018. While some providers have rushed into the new system while Medicare still allows for failure to meet targets, others are waiting (including many higher cost academic medical centers). Here’s what to ask before plunging in—and if you’re already in, how to right the ship.…
Read More
Population HealthPQRS ReportingQualified Clinical Data Registry ReportingValue-Based Payment Modifier
April 14, 2015

How to Organize Your Academic Medical Center for PQRS 2015 Success

Take a deep breath. The last-minute flurry of adjustments and updates to last year’s PQRS reporting is over. And—brace yourselves. It’s time to dig into PQRS 2015, which, if you’ve been following our posts, requires a whole new level of rigor to avoid penalties under Pay for Performance. (Download our free eBook, Insider’s Guide to PQRS 2015 Reporting, if you need to catch up.) Nowhere are the new reporting complexities greater than for Academic Medical Centers (AMCs).  Everyone is scrambling to ensure that workflow adjustments sync with new reporting requirements and general measure changes, but AMCs must contend with additional…
Read More
Future of Health CareMedical EducationPopulation HealthPQRS ReportingQualified Clinical Data Registry ReportingRegistry ScienceResearchValue-Based Payment Modifier
April 7, 2015

Academic Medical Centers at Risk: How to Survive Medicare and Medicaid Value-Based Health Care

Academic Medical Centers (AMCs) provide care to the most complicated patients and have surmounted some of the worst clinical challenges of all time. Yet the biggest issue to threaten survival of AMCs might well be Medicare and Medicaid Value-Based Purchasing. While AMCs incorporate the training of new physicians in both community and highly specialized care, the clinical complexity of their patient population is higher than other institutions. At the same time, AMCs are the most likely medical centers to offer trauma and burn care, new medical technology and clinical research. But with typically high volumes of Medicare and Medicaid patients,…
Read More