ACOG… With You Every Step of the Way
Congress wrote the MACRA law specifically to ensure that CMS worked closely with physicians and medical specialty societies on nearly every aspect of implementation to help ensure this new payment system makes sense to – and works for – physicians.
Already, ACOG is working with CMS and Members of Congress to win badly needed changes to the Quality Payment Program to make sure it meets your practice needs. Our work is led by Dr. Mark DeFrancesco, ACOG’s Immediate Past President, and ACOG’s Vice President for Health Policy, Dr. Barbara Levy. Other valuable members of ACOG’s Payment Transitions Work Group include its chair, Dr. Tina Groat, and Drs. James Breeden, Steven Fleischman, Scott Fowler, Scott Hayworth, Lisa Hollier, John Keats, Janet McCauley, Jordan Pritzker, Holly Puritz, and Martin Tucker.
ACOG submitted detailed comments to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in response to the 962-page proposed rule the agency put out on April 27, 2016. ACOG also joined the American Medical Association and 110 specialty societies and state medical associations in a sign-on letter to voice our collective concern with the complexity of the proposed rule and offer suggestions for simplifying the rule for all practices.
ACOG focused our comments on the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS).
- CMS should allow for more time for practices to set-up the needed infrastructure to successfully report in MIPS and start the first performance period no sooner than July 1, 2017.
- CMS should create a shorter initial performance period so ob-gyns are able to transition into this new reporting system.
- CMS should raise the low-volume threshold to ensure that ob-gyns who see a small proportion of Medicare patients, but who deliver high-cost services, are not required to make onerous investments in reporting infrastructure without the ability to receive payment increases.
- CMS should provide a longer transition period for ob-gyns to adopt certified electronic health record technology (CEHRT) that meets the 2015-edition standard.
- CMS should include ob-gyns in the eligible specialties that can qualify to be a Medical Home Model and Medicaid Medical Home Model. This would allow ob-gyns to participate in an advanced alternative payment model (APM) that would qualify for a 5 percent annual bonus and exempt participants from MIPS.
Over the next months, you can count on ACOG to be with you every step of the way:
- August – ACOG will publish an online practice toolkit and checklist to help you assess your MACRA readiness and get you where you need to be when the performance period starts.
- September – We’ll report online on a list of quality measures that may be relevant to your practice, along with suggestions on how to succeed under other performance categories. We’ll also have MACRA information at the ADMs.
- October – We’ll improve and tailor our tools to your needs, incorporating your suggestions and concerns at the ADMs. We want to be sure you’re ready and understand the final version of the Quality Payment Program.
- November and beyond – ACOG will provide new online resources once the Quality Payment Program’s requirements are finalized to help you understand the new rules of the road and choose your practice path wisely.
ACOG will help you with this important transition with this dedicated set of webpages, ready-to-use PowerPoints, payment reform modules during Coding Workshops, presentations at ACOG’s CLC and Annual Meeting, on-demand webinars, and more. ACOG… We’ll be with you every step of the way.