HAP Radiology Billing and Coding Blog

Exempt from MIPS?  Think Again About Participating as a Group

With the first year of the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) already well underway, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) began sending out MIPS Participation Status Letters in April. The letters were sent to each Eligible Clinician (EC) associated with a group Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN).  An EC can also check the Medicare Quality Payment Program (QPP) web site to determine his or her eligibility.  The letter and web site contain general information about participation in MIPS, along with email and telephone contact information that should be used if a provider feels his or her status is incorrect.

Categories: medicare reimbursement, MIPS, MIPS participation

The Need for Standardized Radiology Documentation to Maximize Medicare Reimbursements

Accuracy and completeness in radiology reporting has taken on an even higher level of importance in order to maximize Medicare reimbursement. The Quality Payment Program (QPP) under MACRA highlights the necessity to meet new quality performance standards.  While the benefits of structured reporting using templates have been discussed before, including in our article Reimbursement Benefits of Structured Radiology Reporting, reporting on quality measures under the QPP has to include very specific terminology in order to receive credit for the measure.  This is an ideal time for radiologists to begin to use standardized reporting across their practice to ensure that all of the critical elements of documentation are met. 

Categories: radiology reimbursement, medicare reimbursement, MIPS, MACRA

Transitioning Your Radiology Practice to MIPS: Improvement Activities

This is the third in our series of articles designed to help radiology practices prepare for the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS). Previous articles covered the Quality Performance Category, which is the largest portion of the MIPS score, and the Advancing Care Information (ACI) Category.  Quality will initially account for at least 60% of the total MIPS score and ACI will account for up to 25% of the total score.  The Improvement Activities (IA) Category, originally called the Clinical Practice Improvement Activities in proposed regulations, represents 15% of the total score for 2017, the first year of MIPS participation.  The fourth element of MIPS, the Cost Category, has been reweighted to zero for 2017.

Categories: radiology reimbursement, MIPS, Quality Payment Program

Why the MIPS Patient-Facing Rules are Important to Radiologists

Physicians and other Eligible Clinicians (ECs) who are participating in MIPS under the MACRA rules governing Medicare payments will face requirements that differ depending on whether they are deemed to be “patient-facing” or not.  This determination will affect the Advancing Care Information (ACI) and Improvement Activities (IA) components, but not the Quality Performance component of MIPS. In this article, we’ll break-down the key considerations for radiology practices. 

Categories: radiology reimbursement, medicare reimbursement, MIPS, MACRA

Transitioning Your Radiology Practice to MIPS: The Quality Component Updated

By now everyone involved in billing Medicare for physician services should be aware of the new Quality Payment Program (QPP) that will be in effect for payments in 2019 based on data submitted in 2017.  The proposed rules for the new system were outlined in our recent article Medicare Quality Reporting Rules are Changing.  The final regulations that will govern the new system were recently issued, and radiology practices will benefit from preparing as early as possible to capture the data they will need to report under the new system.  ­

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Categories: radiology reimbursement, medicare reimbursement, MIPS, Quality Payment Program

Transitioning Your Radiology Practice to MIPS: Advancing Care Information

The Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) is slowly being analyzed and absorbed by the medical community. This system, passed into law by the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA), will begin to take effect for physician reimbursement in 2019 but those payment adjustments will be determined by performance in various categories for services rendered in 2017.  Regulations governing the application of this law have now been finalized and savvy radiology practices can begin to prepare to comply with the new system.

Categories: radiology reimbursement, medicare reimbursement, MIPS, MACRA, Quality Payment Program

Finalized MACRA Rules for 2017 Contain Some Good News for Radiologists

Earlier this year CMS published its proposed regulations that would implement the MACRA law to revamp the Medicare physician payment system. On October 14th, after consideration of over 4,000 comments about the proposed rules, CMS published the final rule that will govern the initial measurement period that begins January 1, 2017 for payment adjustments in 2019. 

Categories: radiology reimbursement, MIPS, MACRA, Quality Payment Program

Medicare Quality Reporting Rules are Changing

This year is the final reporting period under the now-familiar Physicians Quality Reporting System (PQRS). The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) just announced proposed regulations that will govern new Medicare quality-reporting rules known as the Quality Payment Program (QPP) beginning in 2017.  This new system, which was enacted as part of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA), comprises both the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and Alternative Payment Models (APMs).  The final rules will be published later this year, but physicians can begin now to explore whether they want to join an APM or adapt to the MIPS reporting requirements. 

Categories: radiology reimbursement, medicare reimbursement, PQRS, MIPS, MACRA, Quality Payment Program

A Program for Successful PQRS Participation for Radiology Practices – Step 7

At Healthcare Administrative Partners, our mission is to educate practices on CMS Quality Programs and provide a path to optimized performance even in the most challenging markets. This is the final installment of our series of articles, “A Program for Successful PQRS Participation for Radiology Practices,” which was specifically designed to help you maximize reimbursement and reduce compliance issues under the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS).  So far we’ve covered...

Categories: radiology reimbursement, medicare reimbursement, value modifier, PQRS, MIPS, MACRA

CMS Quality Initiatives – Reporting by Radiology Practices in 2016 and Beyond

Congress has mandated that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) move forward with quality-based programs and associated payment models. In 2015, the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) was signed into law, expanding the Medicare quality-reporting programs that began as a voluntary incentive ten years ago with the original Physician Quality Reporting Initiative (PQRI).  Today it is more important than ever to embrace and maximize success in these programs and be ready to move ahead as they evolve. 

Categories: radiology reimbursement, cms, PQRS, MIPS, MACRA

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