Meaningful Use…..How we loved your incentive payments even though it was troubling to document all of your requirements. We put you in the rearview mirror now and focus on 2017. We now move to the beginning of the Quality Payment Program, or QPP. What’s the skinny? On October 14, 2016 the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) detailed the final regulations for implementation of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA), the historic Medicare reform law that repealed the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula last year. OK, what? The short version is that PQRS, Meaningful Use and the Value Based Payment Modifier (VBM) have been combined into a single program. However, payments from these programs will not be affected until 2019. Having said that, we get to learn new acronyms like MACRA, MIPS, and APMs. There are ways to earn additional payments under both MIPS and APMs. You’ll need to decide which route is best for you. Importantly, the thing to remember for the moment is that 2017 data counts. Start collecting it. Do your research. Know which route you’re going to take.
To break this down further, you can visit https://qpp.cms.gov/ . There you will find all of the basic information about the new system. It includes some basic definitions and charts to help you sort through the details. Also, you can head over to https://www.ama-assn.org/practice-management/understanding-medicare-payment-reform-macra to find out more about MACRA. It discusses the final ruling which was released last October. It also has helpful links such as a Payment Model Evaluator to see which model best fits your practice. Good luck!
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